This is not a personal website, it is about India. I hope Bharatiyata! will be a resource for people interested in the country as India grows to become one of the biggest economies in the world.
My name is Andy Marino and I wrote the official or at any rate authorised biography of Prime Minister Modi. I spent many hours with him, talking, travelling, attending rallies, and I was the only Westerner to be granted such access. That’s me with Modi, below, in his office in Gandhinagar when he was still chief minister of Gujarat. I’m the guy on the right.
I am a writer and documentary-maker and I have written biographies before, although they were historical: Modi’s story was the first I had written about someone alive today, so my task was slightly different.
Also I was writing his political biography; that is, a biography with a filter set to sift all the details of his life and career in the light of Modi’s political experience, formation and ideas. I liked this because it meant that I would not have to concentrate on the personal but touch on it only where it was relevant.
I thought it would make the interviews more congenial because I would not have to appear to be prying, and instead could let Modi go at his own pace in choosing what to reveal – his choices in themselves being revealing.
Tavleen Singh, one of India’s foremost journalists, was kind enough to write that ‘Andy Marino has done the best book on Modi to date. It is the only biography that gives an unbiased view of who Modi is.’
Bharatiyata! is not about Modi, however. His presence I suppose is tutelary, because had I not come to know him I probably would not be so entranced with India’s future prospects. I was interested in the country already (see below for links to the BBC series ‘Monsoon Railway’ on which I worked as Assistant Producer), and I found that India grew on me as I hope it grows on you.
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