Academic and journalist Vinay Sitapati, in his recently published book Half Lion: How P.V. Narasimha Rao Transformed India, attempts to give P.V. Narasimha Rao his rightful place in history. Rao was India’s PM between 1991 and 1996, and is credited with playing a major role in bringing in the new economic reforms post liberalisation. This was also the fateful period that witnessed the demolition of the Babri mosque, and heightened communal tension that ensued across the country. Sitapati argues that Rao has been wrongly castigated for his alleged role in the Babri demolition, and offers insights into his life and work through his exhaustive research and interviews.
M.K. Venu, one of the founding editors of The Wire, discusses the facts and arguments presented in the book with Sitapati and Sanjaya Baru. Baru was the media advisor to Manmohan Singh and is also the author of the book The Accidental Prime Minister. Watch the full discussion in the 3 part video series here:
Part I: Political negotiations, becoming PM and Babri Masjid
Part II: Rao in Andhra politics
Part III: Rao, Sonia Gandhi and the Congress