Rupa & Co
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History & Politics
My Country, My Life is the extraordinary self-portrait of one of India's leading political personalities: L.K. Advani. Forced to abandon his beloved Sindh, which became part of Pakistan after independence, Advani poignantly describes the sense of displacement that affected him, as it did millions of Indians. With a career spanning six decades as a political activist in post-1947 India, a witness to and participator of almost all the major socio-political developments in the country, Advani is uniquely qualified to offer a nuanced perspective on independent India's political evolution.
His seminal contribution to India politics, along with fellow politician Atal Bihari Vajpayee, was creating the Bharatiya Janata Party as a viable alternative for governing India and ending the Congress's dominance over the country's polity.
My Country, My Life is a riveting, insightful and assertive account of Advani's fight for democracy during the Emergency; his Ram Rath Yatra for the reconstruction of the Ram temple at Ayodhya that resulted in independent India's biggest mass movement and a nationwide debate on the true meaning of secularism; and his year as India's Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister in the Vajpayee-led government of the National Democratic Alliance between 1998 and 2004.
A testimony to what Advani has always been known for - his clarity of thought - My Country, My Life is a candid reflection of the man, his party, and his nation. In a country where political memoirs, especially by active politicians, are rare, this book is a landmark.
About the Author
Lal Krishna Advani was born on 8 November 1927 in Karachi. He joined the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) at the age of fourteen. In September 1947, he left Karachi amidst the tragedy surrounding Partition. His political journey began in 1951, when Dr Syama Prasad Mookerjee founded the Jana Sangh. The party's chief organizer, Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya, greatly influenced the shaping of Advani's future ideologies.
Advani was elected president of the Jana Sangh in 1973. He was jailed for nineteenth months during the Emergency, along with thousands of pro-democracy activists who fought under the leadership of Jayaprakash Narayan. Advani was the Information and Broadcasting Minister in the Janata Party government between 1977 and 1979. He was also the BJP's longest serving president since its inception in 1980. He also served as Home Minister (1998-2004) and Deputy Prime Minister (2002-2004) in the Vajpayee Government. He has been a member of Parliament since 1970, and is a recipient of the award for 'Outstanding Parliamentarian'.
L.K. Advani is respected as a national leader who combines intellectualism, integrity and mass appeal.