The Life And Times Of George Fernandes – Rahul Ramagundam


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The Militant Trade Union Leader. The Dauntless Political Rebel. The Passionate Socialist Dreamer.

This is a biography of India’s George Fernandes.

George Fernandes (1930-2019)-a firebrand trade union leader, socialist politician and incredibly powerful orator-is popularly known for leading the All India Railwaymen’s Federation (AIRF) in May 1974 and calling upon its approximately 1.7 million employees to strike, which brought India to a halt for twenty days. Often described as a rebel, he pursued every cause he took up with passionate devotion, heedless of the many ups and downs in his life. From the early years of fighting for the rights of dock and municipal workers of Bombay (now Mumbai) through the Emergency, which he resisted by going underground, to his last private decade as a bed-ridden Alzheimer’s patient, his fights were always persistent and single-handed. George could call Bombay to be shut down and rose from its streets to become India’s Defence Minister.

The Life and Times of George Fernandes chronicles the story of George, who rose from the streets of Bombay to stride the corridors of power. In this extraordinary biography, Rahul Ramagundam opens a window to George’s political evolution and traces the course of the Socialist Party in India from its inception in 1930s to its dissolution into the Janata Party in the late 1970s. In the process, this book explores the trail of India’s opposition parties that worked to displace the long-ruling Congress Party from its preeminent position.

Comprehensive, evocative and fascinating, this first definitive biography of George Fernandes is an unputdownable tour de force.


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