The Accidental Prime Minister (The Making and Unmaking of Manmohan Singh)

The Accidental Prime Minister The Making and Unmaking of Manmohan Singh In Sanjaya Baru left a successful career as chief editor of the Financial Express to join Manmohan Singh as his media adviser Singh and Baru had been close and Baru a great admirer of the techno

  • Title: The Accidental Prime Minister (The Making and Unmaking of Manmohan Singh)
  • Author: Sanjaya Baru
  • ISBN: 9780670086740
  • Page: 416
  • Format: Hardcover
  • In 2004 Sanjaya Baru left a successful career as chief editor of the Financial Express to join Manmohan Singh as his media adviser Singh and Baru had been close and Baru, a great admirer of the technocrat who had ushered in the 1991 reforms, saw this as an opportunity to help a man he admired lead India down a new path As Singh s eyes and ears and self appointed conscIn 2004 Sanjaya Baru left a successful career as chief editor of the Financial Express to join Manmohan Singh as his media adviser Singh and Baru had been close and Baru, a great admirer of the technocrat who had ushered in the 1991 reforms, saw this as an opportunity to help a man he admired lead India down a new path As Singh s eyes and ears and self appointed conscience keeper , Baru saw the transformation of Manmohan Singh from technocrat to politician In his account, he tells his story of what it was like to manage public opinion for Singh and how their relationship unraveled, while giving us a riveting look at Indian politics as it happened behind the scenes Capturing the heady early days of UPA 1 to the high noon of the nuclear deal, The Accidental Prime Minister is one of the most important and intimate accounts of the prime minister and UPA 1.

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    • Ê The Accidental Prime Minister (The Making and Unmaking of Manmohan Singh) || ↠ PDF Download by ↠ Sanjaya Baru
      416 Sanjaya Baru
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    About “Sanjaya Baru”

    1. Sanjaya Baru

      Sanjaya Baru is an Indian political commentator and policy analyst, currently serving as Director for Geo Economics and Strategy at the International Institute of Strategic Studies Previously he had served as associate editor at The Economic Times and The Times of India, and then chief editor at Business Standard His father B P R Vithal served as Finance and Planning Secretary during former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh s stint as Secretary of Finance Before he became a journalist, he was a member of Communist Party of India Marxist when he was a student at University of Hyderabad He became Manmohan Singh s media advisor and chief spokesperson, a role in which he served from May 2004 until August 2008 In April 2014, Penguin India published The Accidental Prime Minister, Baru s tell all memoir about his time at the Prime Minister s Office PMO In it, Baru alleges that the prime minister was completely subservient to Congress President Sonia Gandhi, who wielded significant influence in the running of the Singh administration, including the PMO itself The book has sparked off a controversy, with the PMO officially denouncing it as fiction Baru, however, has said that he set out to show an empathetic portrait of the prime minister from

    867 thoughts on “The Accidental Prime Minister (The Making and Unmaking of Manmohan Singh)”

    1. Contrary to what others feel, my respect for Dr. Manmohan Singh which had reached its lowest point has been revived and has only increased.While all the reviews say that this book says what was largely known, my review aims to tell the readers that why they should read this book.Any book that you read teaches you something drawing from the life lessons and experiences of the writer. The Accidental Prime Minister does exactly that and between the lines you will find many takeaways whether you are [...]


    2. I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him. The evil that men do lives after them; The good is oft interred with their bones;So let it be with Caesar. I am to speak what I do know. You all did love him once, not without cause: What cause withholds you then, to mourn for him? O judgment! thou art fled to brutish beasts, And men have lost their reason. Bear with me; My heart is in the coffin there with CaesarI am firmly of belief that a no better parallel came be drawn to this book than what Mark sa [...]


    3. Who can afford to not read the biggest publishing phenomenon in India in the last decade? As if that was not enough, who can afford to not read the first of a whole genre of books that has not till now existed in India i.e. people who work with powerful politicians and then talk about it? For these reasons alone, you would want to check this book out no matter what the reviews say. Having said that, here are my thoughts:1. The books reads well. It should. The author is a senior journalist.2. Thi [...]


    4. After reading the book one could easily come to the conclusion that the difference between UPA1 and UPA2 was the media advisor. Dr Singh (Manmohan Singh)was tutored, educated, built and defended by this media advisor during UPA1. Hence Dr Singh succeeded, as did UPA1 despite enormous shortcomings. The whole book is in poor taste. Perhaps the initial attempt was to project Dr Singh as a hero and the fall-guy but once Baru could not be brought on board again, he goes on to question his "hero" for [...]


    5. A helpless Bheeshma of our times!This book is the first of a kind which provides an insiders account to how things unfolded during the first tenure of the UPA government. it also throws light on the personality of Dr. Manmohan Singh and how he managed to run the coalition. This book is an account of how a good, wise and a learned man was put on the wrong side defending a disreputable lot. Manmohan Singh is the case of a person who has been stabbed time and again by his colleagues, by the fellow [...]


    6. After reading the book I can only say that media reports have been very selective while reporting about this book.Definitely, an undue emphasis has been given to the latter part of the book's title while deciding on the theme of these reports.My respect for Dr. Singh has only increased after reading the book. Every great man has certain failings which are often retrospectively attributed to him while criticising his work and life.But the eclipse of Sun shouldn't make us conclude that it never sh [...]


    7. Sanjaya Baru needs to be praised for taking the bold (some may say, controversial)step of deciding to write this book. Our politicians and bureaucrats prefer to take the refuge of sensitive matters and official secrets in order to justify their decision of not coming out with their memoirs. But, this is precisely the kind of transparency that we need, of a view inside the corridors of power, who lobbies for whom, what motivates the various characters and so on.Coming to the book, Sanjaya Baru de [...]


    8. Loads and loads of information, and many times, about unimportant events.Tons of name droppings and glorification of one's own contributions. Poor story-telling to hold the attention of the reader.Deliberate shunning of controversial subjects. I thought I would gain some insider's view in to the workings of one of the makers of Modern India ( I doubt if there are any critics of his 1991 economic reforms), who became a laughing stock as a lame-duck/puppet prime minister as the opposition labeled [...]


    9. A little laborious read, if you are following-up the politics of India for the last decade. It is laborious not because of the style of writing but the content. The entire book tries to say that Manmohan Singh is an honest, gentleman politician and an able economist, became a prime minister but could not wield his power because omnipotent Sonia controlling him and the government.Manmohan Singh's vision on external affairs and relationship with Pakistan is really a key take away for me from this [...]


    10. The book gives a clear idea about how complex it is to run a government. There are so many participants, all precariously strung together, and contrary to public opinion 'the first among the equal' is not, in fact, the most powerful. Though Dr. Singh was more submissive than an usual PM, but I feel even a PM with a majority would have as many factions in his own party to keep happy.For the common man, who demands changes in 100 days, this book is a MUST. Running a government is a mammoth task an [...]


    11. To those of us who have no inkling of what happens in the top corridors of government, how power is viewed from within, how decisions are taken, how human ambition meets the most important issues that face the country, this book is quite a revelation. It appears matter-of-fact. 'Look, this is how it is', kind of things. That top decisions are never about morality or rightness, but they are the output of a few humans jostling for power and limelight, is another thing worth seeing. We need to see [...]


    12. Interesting account of the 'inner-workings' of the UPA1 government by a seasoned editor(little UPA2).Dr Singh,despite being the most 'qualified' politician in the world,struggled with the public perception of being a weak Prime Minister throughout his two terms.The book tells us why the perception was wrong and right.A must read for anyone interested in Indian politics.


    13. The Accidental Prime Minister is a much ‘discussed, debated, ridiculed and praised’ piece of authorship in large part because of the timing of its publication which was just before the 2014 General Elections and also due to its purported goal of rehabilitating the legacy and work of the former Prime Minister-the only one to have served two full five year terms after Nehru. The controversial nature of the book arises from the fact that it is one of the few committed attempts to investigate th [...]


    14. An insider's story into what transpired during UPA-1.It is no secret that Dr. Manmohan Singh was the accidental Prime Minister. Sanjay Baru was not just his media advisor, he was also a trusted confidant.The book presents an hitherto unseen image of Dr. Singh. Personally speaking, it improved my image of Dr. Singh. It presents his political acumen - rather the fact that he had any political acumen at all. As Digvijay Singh once said - "I don't know if he's an over-rated economist; but I do know [...]


    15. This Book could have been an Instant Bestseller, could have sold like Hot Cakes but the Author Sanjaya Baru shuns this opportunity in order to protect his skin & that of ex-PM Manmohan Singh. I would have readily given this Book a 5 star if it was a Biography rather than a Scandalous piece on Politics. Sanjaya's Detailed narration of the ongoings of the day-to-day life in the ex-PM's life is Fascinating & Articulate. Sanjaya Baru, who was ex-PM Manmohan Singh's Media Adviser explains in [...]


    16. I chose to read this book while BJP holds Delhi's realm with full majority and Dr. Manmohan Singh has resigned from his post of The Accidental Prime Minister. The hype of this book made me read it cover to cover despite of my feeble interest and knowledge of politics. This well written book tries to cover a series of discrete events from a third man's eye (Sanjaya Baru) - what a man of few words might have been through while heading a Left-driven, congress controlled assembly. Sanjaya Baru is a [...]


    17. The book a must read for anyone interested in Indian politics. Sanjay Baru tries to answer the question in the minds of millions of Indians, how Singh who was once hailed as King (after nuclear deal with US) reduced himself to an object of ridicule. Most of the book describes PM's work done during UPA-!. That is the period when Mr. Baru was PM's media adviser. And tries to guess why PM did not resign during UPA II.Dr Singh's contribution of economic liberalisation (Mr. Rao played a bigger role h [...]


    18. When it comes to India's former Prime Minister Dr.Manmohan Singh, numerous number of doubts and questions float in the mind of people. Dr.Manmohan Singh has a stunning education background,vast experience as professor in top class universities and also in government agencies like planning commission . He was also a former reserve bank governor and has major role in rescuing India from inflation crisis in 1970s and balance of payment crisis in 1991. He was the major architect of liberalization in [...]


    19. Easy and quick read. The book contains 13 chapters excluding Introduction and Epilogue. In the introduction the author announces various aspects like why he is writing the book what the books deals with and the what are the sources and the maintaining anonymity of the sources in case if anyone asked to do so. on the whole the book deals with various aspects beginning form the elections of 2004 and the UPA-1 to his leaving of office from PMO as the media adviser. Why I started reading this book.I [...]


    20. I do not follow politics so closely yet was intrigued to read this book. At the end of the book, I felt sorry for Manmohan Singh, the man fought like a true soldier, but Congress took all the credit and blamed him for all the flak! Dont know how to interpret this book. Interesting read for sure, but surely the politics that get played out there must be much more than the media adviser would get to know of. One perspective - but falls short of other's perspective. Nevertheless an engrossing read


    21. A constant tone of self-congratulation and repeated blowing of his own trumpet mars an otherwise racy narrative.The brilliant episode of how Manmohan Singh pushed the nuclear deal through underlines the writing skills of the author.In the name of resurrecting a hapless PM's image,the author has sullied the government's image totally. Vinod Mehta has dismissed this book off as fiction and except for the obvious facts (such as two centres of power) which we know already,it does seem so. A quickie [...]


    22. Riveting account of happenings in the corridors of high powers, of turf battles, of a fractious opposition, of (some) double-dealing allies, or a party that failed to put its full support behind a man who accomplished much and could have risen to become one of India's greatest leaders had he been a little firmer in his second term doesn't portray some leading lights of the party very well and that may account of their angry outbursts



    23. After reading the book I can definitely say my respect for Manmohan Singh as a Prime minister has increased. Having not followed politics in detail during his tenure, I did not know much about him. And hearing only the bad news that plagued the nation in times of UPA2, I did not have a very good impression on him. The book does give a perspective on the limitations of coalition governments. And also on how dynastic politics works and how both of these in combination can restrain leaders. I belie [...]


    24. A political memoir of our Ex Prime minister Dr. Manmohan Singh.The book alleges that Singh was not entirely in control of his cabinet or even the PMO. Instead, significant power was wielded by the INC's president Ms. Gandhi to whom Singh was completely "subservient".Some of the best points to remember are:Sometimes in life it is wise to be foolish.Madam, it is best to leave when everyone asks you why rather than when!Dr Singh’s personal credibility and his standing as PM had reached such h [...]


    25. After reading this book , my views towards MMS has changed a lot. His intellectual and patriotism could never be doubted. Baru's analogy of MMS with Bhishma is well portrayed


    26. Flash back to 2004!Vajpayee is seeking reelection even when six months are still to go. The BJP is riding on a strong economy and the country’s new status as a nuclear weapons state. The party was confident to win the race with its new slogan “India Shining”. Pandits of history most of them are, but the BJP’s strategists forgot to factor in a crucial parameter of the country’s mindset into the equation. Indians feels embarrassed to celebrate any victory of their country. It eulogizes d [...]


    27. I was in school when Dr. Manmohan Singh became the Prime Minister. My understanding of politics then was limited and I didn't understand coalition politics at all. But I had read a lot about Manmohan Singh - The Finance Minister and I felt that there couldn't be a better person to be PM. Over the years, I began to understand politics better and came to respect the PM more during UPA-1. The series of scandals in UPA-2 and the PM's response (rather the lack of it) to these scandals felt like a bet [...]


    28. I had heard a lot of hype about this book and for once the hype was 100% unjustified. I just finished reading it and fortunately or unfortunately there is not a single reason why I would ever like to read it again or for that matter even waste precious space on my bookshelf.Now coming to the why - I don't even know which was the biggest reason, let's go through them one by one:1) The author's ego: Lord, whats with the name dropping? I know Delhi is notorious for this evil and being a part of PMO [...]


    29. The book is not bad but for me it couldn't live up to the hype generated by it. This book promised to reveal inside information about the working of the PMO and Sonia-Manmohan relationship, but fails on that account and only pays lip service to these topics. The author tries to defend the spineless actions of the PM in the first term by evoking his selfless and timid nature every time. But the same actions are criticized once the author fails to get the post of the adviser to the PM in the secon [...]


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