Josy Joseph’s “The Silent Coup – a History of India’s Deep State” is a brutally brilliant book exposing the flaws within the democratic structure of India.
India never had any history of a military coup since its independence, but this book shows that India’s security establishment comprising of its military and various intelligence and policing structures like the CBI, IB, state police, NCB are all deeply connected to the ruling party whomsoever it is whether at the centre or state. The security establishment creates narratives to favour the political executive whether it is at the beck and call of the political establishment or to curry favour with the political elite is not known but it is rampant and destroying the very moral and social fabric of a democratic nation.
In the process, innocent persons are randomly picked up as suspects under some draconian anti terror laws and held without bail or charges for years together. These poor people who cannot afford rich lawyers are then beaten and tortured in police cells forcing them to confess or kept for years together in cells denying them basic human rights.
Joseph has given various examples of such political party – security establishment nexus from the Gujarat riots of 2002 to the Kashmir insurgency, the militancy in North East, the Salva Judum case, the fiasco in Sri Lanka to a plethora of train bombing cases of Mumbai. The rot as per Joseph started from Indira Gandhi time and has continued unchecked but has assumed deadly proportions post 2014 with the government hell bent on creating a singular narrative.
Fortunately for many of the victims, the higher courts have come to their rescue throwing out the shoddy prosecution charges without any iota of evidence. The professionalism of the security establishment has been severely compromised in the process. This is a very difficult book to finish, what with such brutality being used by security forces against innocent persons in India. Goodreads 5/5