A Feast of Vultures: The Hidden Business of Democracy in India

A Feast of Vultures The Hidden Business of Democracy in India Every day millions of people the rich the poor and the many foreign visitors are hunting for ways to get their business done in modern India If they search in the right places and offer the appropri

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  • Title: A Feast of Vultures: The Hidden Business of Democracy in India
  • Author: Josy Joseph
  • ISBN: 9789350297513
  • Page: 478
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Every day, millions of people the rich, the poor and the many foreign visitors are hunting for ways to get their business done in modern India If they search in the right places and offer the appropriate price, there is always a facilitator who can get the job done This book is a sneak preview of those searches, the middlemen who do those jobs, and the many opport Every day, millions of people the rich, the poor and the many foreign visitors are hunting for ways to get their business done in modern India If they search in the right places and offer the appropriate price, there is always a facilitator who can get the job done This book is a sneak preview of those searches, the middlemen who do those jobs, and the many opportunities that the fast growing economy offers Josy Joseph draws upon two decades as an investigative journalist to expose a problem so pervasive that we do not have the words to speak of it The story is big that of treacherous business rivalries, of how some industrial houses practically own the country, of the shadowy men who run the nation s politics The story is small a village needs a road and a hospital, a graveyard needs a wall, people need toilets.A Feast of Vultures is an unprecedented, multiple level inquiry into modern India, and the picture it reveals is both explosive and frightening Within these covers is unimpeachable evidence against some of the country s biggest business houses and political figures, and the reopening of major scandals that have shaped its political narratives Through hard nosed investigations and the meticulous gathering of documentary evidence, Joseph clinically examines and irrefutably documents the non reportable It is a troubling narrative, but also a call to action and a cry for change A tour de force through the wildly beating heart of post socialist India, the book is a must read for anyone interested in understanding the large, unwieldy truth about this nation.

    One thought on “A Feast of Vultures: The Hidden Business of Democracy in India”

    1. This has been a difficult book to read. As a citizen of the country, you cannot be ignorant of the corruption and injustice festering through its length and breadth. However, this books offers the jarring realisation that we have only seen a somewhat sanitised version of it. It fills me with despair, guilt, shame, anger and helplessness. That urban India, which gripes daily about infrastructure woes, is largely ignorant of the many struggles of its rural counterpart is brought home rather effect [...]

    2. And the poor continue to beg for their inalienable rights----------------------------------------------A dazzling piece of non-fiction, A Feast of Vultures lays bare the problems that confound India. India s best-known investigative reporter, Josy Joseph, writes with moral conviction, yet never denigrates to pontification as he piles up evidence of corruption in high places. The truth is conveyed through a searing prose an alarm for the citizens to wake up and take notice. Corruption is everywhe [...]

    3. A brilliant overview of the multiple actors who run our country from behind the screens. The author will be facing litigations from big corps and they are the best reviews for this book.

    4. There are a few words hardwired into the Indian psyche that only float to the surface at the time of elections. Some that I can think of are - development, secularism, anti-corruption, growth, anti-fundamentalism etc. These words lavishly peppered with other well-worn ones like democracy and freedom are used and abused in speeches and other promotional material during the elections. The amusing thing about these words is that they disappear into thin air once someone wins and comes to power, onl [...]

    5. A very courageous book that names and shames India's top industrialists for their illegal and inhuman paths to riches. Also gives a glimpse into how the political machinery works at all levels.However, the book seems to be written in a haste and it should have been longer and indepth.

    6. A journalistic work on how the rapacity and greed of the Government-Businessmen-crime nexus rules this nation.

    7. Rating on the normal scale: 4/5Rating on the Anand Gopal scale: 2/5Of the things I like to do when looking for some validation of my existence, is re-watch the part of the documentary Nero’s Guests, wherein Sainath says, “The cruelty of what’s happening is the most astonishing part of it.”I find solace in reminding myself that there are lifeforms—the members of the think-tank industry and the “development” consultants whom he describes using very appropriate words—whose existence [...]

    8. The book is the culmination of the information and knowledge that the author has gathered over an illustrious journalistic career, about the way our country works and what it takes to get anything done. It showcases the sheer amount of crony capitalism, rampant corruption and excessive greed which feeds the engine of "growth" at the cost of the environment, social justice and fair play. It's an eye-opening account for someone unfamiliar with how India works and provides a lot of insight to show [...]

    9. A COURAGEOUS PROFILE OF INDIA'S GROWING CORRUPTIONJosy, an investigative journalist behind India’s recent journalism scoops, effectively straddles his makeover as a leading non-fiction writer. While his work through the years chronicles the brutal saga behind India’s leading problems of corruption and ‘middle-man’ equations—Josy courageously names politicians and businessmen, who are complicit in the art of undermining India’s progress for their selfish agenda. As the country’s ima [...]

    10. The deep-rooted business of corruption in India as seen through the years of investigative journalism by Josy Joseph. There are eye-opening revelations about middlemen whom we never hear about (typists & acquaintances of the ruling clan, arms deal brokers, tax haven logistics providers, etc.) and the enormous power they wield in policy decisions and government deals. The book dedicates a significant portion to the private aviation sector, the meteoric rise of East West airlines, and how a ce [...]

    11. If you want to get depressed about state of affairs for us in India-pick up this book. I think you can call the book more a piece of narrative journalism which lays bare the well known but rarely told ways in which the Indian democracy and its institutions work. The writer raise some pertinent questions about- why the most important questions facing our democracy like Funding of our Political Parties, The politician-corporate-criminal nexus and so on, can only find limited coverage in our mainst [...]

    12. this book is a troubling reportage of the state of affairs of governance and its the various arms that are meant to keep corruption and malpractice in check. sadly we have seen a cohabitation of both. this book explores the role of middle men who could be anything for ex military to politicians to stenos or personal assistants of ministers and bureaucrats who would the real power. this book also discusses the rapid rise of how corporate India remains a benefactor of which ever party that comes t [...]

    13. The book is a bit slow start with but the chapters towards the end are really insightful. The book had an overall negative undertone. I think with the mass media the point that the author is trying to make does get broadcasted one to often. I would have appreciated it more if the author could have given even more insight into the modus operandi of the characters mentioned in the book. That said I really liked the chapter on an old famous airline that many might not even know the name of now.

    14. Questions that arose in my mind each time a scandal or scam broke, finds a place in Josy’s book.“ The duty of the new officers was to push aside all kinds of obstacles and facilitate industries, and if there were laws for protecting the tribals and the forest, and for land acquisition their duty was to help the entrepreneurs overcome them, because India wanted all these thousands of megawatts of electricity and ores.” A Feast of Vultures, a terrifying read on corruption in India, is testim [...]

    15. This book is a brilliant piece of investigative journalism. Nothing prepared me for many of the shocking revelations in this book. The author has been now slapped with a Rs 1000 crore defamation case by a major businessman. The sections which focus on the murky defense deals were an eyeopener. I had to read most of the sections of the book twice to really take in the information contained.

    16. One of the best books that i have read on contemporary issues. The book has been written by an investigative journalist, and the content is just fabulous. Visit the Author's website which details his columns written in various newspapers.

    17. This is going to be fascinating. Started today.Latest update: Investigative journalism of the best quality.

    18. I'd few minutes of spare time to kill between the work, and this book was resting on my desk after being freshly delivered earlier in the morning. So, I picked up this book and started reading its introduction and then I couldn't put it down before finishing it. It's gripping, depressing, frustrating, disappointing, incredible and brave at the same time. It's the story of corruption in the contemporary India and how everyone is available for sale.Josy Joseph is an investigative journalist and ma [...]

    19. Journalist Josy Joseph's brilliant and explosive non-fiction book A Feast of Vultures categorically proves the old adage that the pen is mightier than the sword right, as he exposes the men in power of their corrupt practices and the frustrating nature of doing business in India.Little wonder then that just months after the release of the book, Jet Airways founder and chairman Naresh Goyal filed a Rs 1000 crore defamation lawsuit against the writer and publisher Harper Collins.In response to the [...]

    20. "However, the people who told me some of the greatest truths about modern India will never even know about this book, because they cannot read."Josy Joseph points out the machineries, middlemen and multimillionaires who grease the rusty cogs of power religiously and wallows in the murky waters of corruption without any concerns. A good read indeed.

    21. I probably would not have read this book had it not been prescribed reading in one of my courses. But I'm glad I did. This is a work of rare courage and conviction. It is unremitting in its pursuits - from India's venal political class to the many oligarchs who essentially run the country, all conveniently brought together by a network of powerful middlemen, the book spares none. Of course, at the highest echelons as the author points out, it is unclear who is an industrialist and who is a middl [...]

    22. I like the way book takes a dip at corruption fuels Indian Democracy. Most of us, understand corruption at grass root level - Government offices, traffic polices etc. but the corruption at the executive level is far more malicious to public. It is good to see the numbers and understand the impact. Author subtly touches each political party and proves that no one is different. A must read.

    23. As far as I'm concerned there was nothing new, unheard of, but only in-depth details of the well known scandals and corruption. Every five years we are witnessing something like musical chairs just to know the fact that by whose hands shall have be ruined for the coming years, for every party whenever comes to the power takes anti-people measures and wrings them out with extra taxation, as well as the imbroglio of Red-Tapism, only to give way to more corruption. All are concentrating on scandals [...]

    24. Riveting. Devastating. An eye opener to all affluent "well-to-do" yuppie Indians about the real insights on how their country works, a system of deceit, corruption, cruelty, lawlessness, goondaism and a complete and absolute disregard for the lives of anyone who does not matter or dare to question the powers that are, a refusal to even recognize their right to life, even, especially if you are from the social, linguistic or racial structures who are "lesser". The introductory chapter itself is e [...]

    25. While many of us have some idea of the corruption and red tape in india. We dont know the full details in terms of scale, extent, no. and names of participants. This whole underbelly of middlemen and need for bribes at every stage of creaking government machinery is exposed thru detailed analysis of a sampling of events. This Book reads like a Kafkasque nightmare which never ends. It just goes on and on and it only gets worse. It is also clear that this underbelly/shadow system is agnostic to wh [...]

    26. A Feast of Vultures is pretty much the story of India post-liberalisation, the story of the poor, disenfranchised who have lost access to the tools of democracy and the few elite, who have come to be the ultimate beneficiaries of the capitalist era. Josy Joseph lays bare the slimy underbelly of administration in India, shedding light on the intricate ways in which money and power are intertwined in a nexus that has buried itself deep into the system, and functions in most imperceptible ways. The [...]

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