Modi: Wheels of Change

On this date, Narendra Modi is too familiar a name to need any introduction. Actively taking over the Indian political scene, his rapid reforms at the Central level are being widely lauded. With some or the other headline being made on almost a daily basis, the book ‘Modi: Wheels of Change’ by ASM Shamsul Arefin and Sanghamitra Saha comes in very handy as it compiles the activities of the BJP government in power (though only the ones that were carried out during the first 6 months of the party coming in power).

The book doesn’t focus extensively on Modi’s personal life, nor does it entirely talk about how Modi rose to power. It does not even draw any direct comparison between the functioning of the current government and the previous one. Quoting from the description of the book, ‘this book is a compilation of the writing and activities related to Modi’s electoral commitment, day-to-day work and governance of the BJP’. With the first part of the book dedicated to some background narration on Modi’s life (facts, information, very brief biography and his few firsts after he swore as the PM), it is ensured that a person unaware of Modi’s background too knows sufficient to get started. The background also covers the details of the subsequently chosen cabinet of ministers.

My favourite thing about the book has been the way only the key points of every activity/headline have been focused on. Everything has been briefed up very crisply. It makes for a neat write-up and it is convenient for the reader too for going through the same. The facts have been compiled keeping in mind well the way they can serve historians and students. And since the information has directly been taken from governmental papers, articles and news items published nationally and internationally, as well as new media sources, the authenticity of the matter is assured, along with the matter being well-written. Besides, no compromise has been made with the number of facts that have been shared. For example, in the Chapter 16 – Day-wise Programme of the first 100 days as Prime Minister (May to September), every single day’s work by the government has been covered point-wise. It makes us both appreciate the BJP government for its active presence in the political scene, as well as makes us admire the authors’ efforts at compiling all the relevant information effectively.

Another noteworthy thing implementation in this book has been the way how after regular intervals, some major news on Modi by some of the top-notch news agencies has been highlighted by printing them in large letters, giving them an entire page. That goes on to set a tone for the book which quite adds to the interest of reading such a work of non-fiction.  Together with all of these, a couple of Modi’s speeches from different occasions have been written too (which definitely would be of great joy to someone who admires Modi’s brilliant oration skills, which is most of us).

The last section of the book covers Modi’s visits abroad. No doubt this needed a separate section (haha). While his visits abroad get criticized heavily, in this book the diplomatic significance of those trips have been elaborated very well, again, by taking matter from the articles by reliable news agencies for the source. Also, I cannot forget mentioning the images section which covers PM Modi’s images from some key events he has been to. However, a couple of pictures (12 of them), don’t have a caption telling where and with whom are they taken with, which is my only (tiny) complaint for this 503-paged compilation.

Reading through this book, sure made my view of Modi resonate with that of Shimon Peres’ (the Nobel Peace Prize Winner and former Prez of Israel): ” Modi combining best of Gandhi, Nehru to bring ‘3rd revolution’ in India.” (-IBN Live)

Other details of the book :-

Title: Modi: Wheels of Change
Editor: ASM Shamsul Arefin, Sanghamitra Saha
PublisherBee Books (Twitter: @bee_books)
Pages: 503
Genre: Non-Fiction/Documentation


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