New Delhi: A new book written by Appu Esthose Suresh and Priyanka Kotamraju offers a fresh account of the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi.
Published by HarperCollins India, the book — The Murderer, the Monarch and the Fakir: A New Investigation of Mahatma Gandhi’s Assassination — will be released on 5 November on ‘Softcover’, ThePrint’s online venue to release select non-fiction books.
As the title suggests, the book is a three-part exploration of this fresh account of investigation, with the parts named ‘Murderer’, ‘Monarch’ and ‘Fakir’, respectively.
However, it is the prologue, penned by Suresh, which kicks things off, as he quotes an NCERT history textbook’s “desultory mention” of Gandhi’s assassination, which is “arguably modern India’s biggest political development”.
Suresh details the reasoning behind his and co-author Kotamraju’s exploration of the circumstances leading to, and investigations surrounding, Gandhi’s assassination.
“For Priyanka and me, it made sense to revisit Gandhi’s assassination. The current national political churn that we are witnessing feels familiar,” Suresh writes.
The contents of this book were pieced together using documents, that were not easily accessible, of intelligence briefs, police records and numerous challenging interviews.
“Tracing some of the family members of those who were part of the investigation team and making contact was the most difficult assignment in my reporting career,” Suresh writes.
As a result, Suresh and Kotamraju expose a conspiracy broader than popular historical narratives around Gandhi’s assassination, with a deeper look into “princely states, hypermasculinity and a militant right-wing” in a newly independent India.
Suresh is Senior Atlantic Fellow at the International Inequalities Institute, London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE), and previously reported on issues such as communal violence and offshore accounts as an investigative journalist.
Kotamraju is a Senior Atlantic Fellow at LSE’s International Inequalities Institute, and a former editor of the grassroots media organisation Khabar Lahariya.