As someone who has devoted three decades of his life to multilateral cooperation at the United Nations, Shashi Tharoor, undeniably an aficionado of global governance and foreign diplomacy. Shahi in his riveting book ‘Pax Indica’, trenchantly notes the forces that thwart India from becoming a major power at the global table. He peevishly writes about the impediments that India bedevils from its neighbors, which nurture and provide succor in their soil; the claims of its frontiers from the overweening China, which is one of the incipient major powers in the 21st century; and the policies with the USA which most of them are desultorily formulated. He eloquently adds, how India has transmuted from the stereotype west has from as land of snake-charmers and begging bowls — poverty marginally leavened by exotica to a land of engineers and scientists who are now seen as a synonym with mathematics and science and IT. Further, he adds how India can rise as a soft power by promoting its creed, culture, customs, cuisine, Bollywood, etc! Tharoor, proffered in this book, that reform at United Nations is salient for the well-being of the world!
The post-colonial India, which weaned on multilateral lenders has transformed itself to where no power on earth can presume to dictate to India on any international issue in this 21st century!
The speech turned into a book, Shashi Tharoor in ‘An Era of Darkness: The British Empire in India’, makes a bold attempt to strike back at the British colonialism in India. While this book aroused intense emotions as I read this book, when I am myself an expatriate in England, Tharoor has done a great deal of effort in his analysis of the iniquitous of the imperialism and the rapaciousness of the Briton’s forebears. This book lays bare the colonialism as a tale of slavery, plunder, corruption, land-grabbing, famines, exploitation, indentured labor, impoverishment, massacres, genocide and forced resettlement!