There is perhaps no political figure in modern history who did more to secure and protect the Indian nation than Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. But, ironically, seventy years after Patel brought together piece by piece the map of India by fusing the princely states with British India to create a new democratic, independent nation, little is understood or appreciated about Patel's enormous contribution to the making of India. Caricatured in political debate, all the nuances of Patel's difficult life and the daring choices he made are often lost, or worse, used as mere polemic. If Mahatma Gandhi was the spiritual core of India's freedom struggle and Jawaharlal Nehru its romantic idealism, it was Sardar Patel who brought in the vital pragmatism which held together the national movement and the first ideas of independent India. A naturally stoic man, Patel, unlike Gandhi or Nehru, wrote no personal history. He famously argued that its was better to create history than write it.The Man who Saved India reverses one of the historical ironies of modern India through bringing into light many of the unknown facts of the life of Patel, based on the author's field visits, interviews, and extensive research, which is an onerous task in itself considering the fact that Patel neither maintained records of his work nor preserved his documents of communications. Hindol begins the narration of larger than life tale of Patel describing his visit to the birth home of Patel in Nadiad, now in dilapidated condition, an image not unlike the less than optimal public memory of Patel in modern India.
Hindol Sengupta is an award-winning author and has written eight books. He's been published in the United States, UK, and India, among other countries. In 2018, he won the prestigious Wilbur Award instituted by The Religion Communicators Council of America for Being Hindu: Understanding a Peaceful Path in a Violent World, the first book on Hinduism to do so. He was also awarded the PSF Prize for public service in India in 2015. His book Recasting India: How Entrepreneurship is Revolutionizing the World's Largest Democracy was shortlisted in 2015 for the Hayek Prize given by the Manhattan Institute in memory of economist and Nobel laureate F.A. Hayek. Sengupta is a World Economic Forum Young Global leader and a Knight-Bagehot Fellow at Columbia University. He has been a journalist at the Indian editions of Fortune magazine, Bloomberg TV, CNBC, and CNN. He is the founder of the global solutions journalism platform Grin.
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