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The Prince and The Sannyasi

Language: English
Length: 674 Pages
Publisher: Hachette India
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In 1921, a half-naked sannyasi appears in Dhaka and is identified as the Second Kumar of Bhawal a quintessential zamindar given to hunting, shooting and womanizing who was believed to have died in Darjeeling twelve years earlier. Persuaded to visit his estate, where he is interrogated, the fakir is disowned as an impostor by his ?widow?, but his sisters swear that he is their long-lost brother. Then begins a legal battle in which the sannyasi seeks to prove his identity while others seek to destroy his claims, and, soon, the whole of British India is divided on the identity of the sannyasi. This book tells the incredible story of the prince as pauper, of pauper as resurrected prince. Partha Chatterjee?s retelling of the notorious ?Bhawal Sannyasi Case? ? one of India?s best-known and most historic legal battles ? has been widely acclaimed and was declared the joint winner of the Rabindra Purashkar in 2003.

About the Author
Partha Chatterjee, a founding member of the Subaltern Studies collective, is one of the world?s major political theorists. He has been director of the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta, and is a professor of anthropology at Columbia University. His many books include The Politics of the Governed, and its sequel, Lineages of Political Society

Specifications of The Prince and The Sannyasi (Paperback)

Book Details
Publisher Hachette India
Imprint Hachette India
Publication Year 2011
ISBN-13 9789350092613
ISBN-10 9350092613
Language English
Binding Paperback
Number of Pages 674 Pages
Height 216.0 inch
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Book Reviews of The Prince and The Sannyasi

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06 May 12
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The Indian Tichborne case

Prof. Partha chatterjee's research oriented book is based on the startling Bhawal case, which captivated undivided Bengal for nearly two decades in the 1930s and 1940s' The book deals extensively with the legal case concerning the possible identity of the second Kumar of Bhawal, who presumably died in Darjeeling in 1909, due to an attack of biliary colic, but reappeared as a sannyasi in Dhaka after a long hiatus of eleven years.
Was he an impostor and a fraud? Was he murdered in Darjeeling? Was his body cremated? Was he rescued from the crematorium by the sadhus when his body had been abandoned for a while due to a hailstorm?
The case went on for several years, with leading legal luminaries of Bengal arguing the case for both sides. Several notable witnesses deposed for and against the plaintiff. The District Judge, Pannalal Basu, however, ruled in favour of the sannyasi, and his judgement was upheld by a majority, but split verdict in the Calcutta High Court. The Privy Council too ruled in favour of the sannyasi and confirmed that he was indeed the 2nd Kumar of Bhawal, thereby dismissing the petition of his wife, who claimed all along that he was an impostor.
Prof Chatterjee has written this book in a very simple and lucid style, although he has touched upon the socio-economical, historical, political, cultural and philosophical aspects prevalent in that era. This real life story can beat any suspense thriller hollow, so engrossing it is! The court room drama that unfolded would perhaps put even Perry Mason to shame!
This is an excellent book, a must read for all book lovers.

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Sanjay Sen
20 January 14
The Prince and the Sannyasi

Excellent read-a book that goes beyond the mere facts of what was easily the most celebrated case of its time and tries to explore a possible link to the changing socio economic and political landscape of India in the manner in which things turned out the way they did.The author's erudition is beyond doubt and makes this a treatise of Historical Sociology if one may use the phrase which elevates this book to a level far higher than what the rather innocous title suggests
And on a more hypothetical note one wonders what the approach of a different set of defence lawyers would be had the opportunity arisen-frankly despite all the evidence I would be lying if I said that niggling doubts still did not persist so to that extent I fully agree with the author's conclusion!
Highly recommended

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09 February 12
Return of the Effin Native as an Effin Prince! Groovy and Earth Effin Shakin

This is probably the most readable book ever written by any Indian scholar since Ved Vyas and Tulsi Das! Man, I is not jokin wen I sez dis! It is an effin epic, Maan! Iz set at the end of the British Raj and in it a prince literally returns from the dead to reclaim hiz effin kingdom. But his princess wife, she sez Nope, this dude ain't my hubby. But one of he sisters, she sez Yo Eff O to the princess, coz dis here genleman, she say, he me Brudder, okay? After that, Maan, it grow into almighty Big Fight all over India, jess like de Mahabharata, only Better I say! If all dem sods teachin in Indian universities could write history stuff like dis guy he done, Maan, we'd have Harvard and Cambridge right bang in de middle of Bharata!

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1 of 3 users found this review helpful.
25 October 11
first to review
the prince and the sanyassi is one of the most intresting books,a must read for history buffs.

this book takes u back in the british raj and the content keeps u hooked shows the life and times of the jagirdars and the high handedness of british administraters in handling indian of the most interesting books and a must read.

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06 June 12
A great book

Partha C has written a magnum opus of sorts. The titillating lifestyle of a young man from a wealthy Zamindar family is brought forth with astounding lucidity, so much so, that you will feel you are living the era the book is based on.

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    ISBN Number: 9350092613, 9789350092613, 978-9350092613


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