A Feast of Vultures is a sombre look at the underpinnings behind the facade of an emerging India. If you want a behind-the-scenes account of the functioning of the Indian state, this book is for you. It lays bare the truth behind the working of politico-business empires of the country, using them as a metaphor for vultures preying on the continuing feast of the liberalized Indian economy.
Penned by Josy Joseph, a journalist with a 2 decade long experience covering issues of national interest, A Feast of Vultures provides a narrative that is gloomy and disheartening. From the already much-criticised working of the government, to the crony capitalism of the private sector, the book is wide-ranging and spares none. However, this insider’s account is not to be confused with scoops and rumours compiled from Lutyens’ Delhi. This book is far from it, it has anecdotes and documentary references that betray the work of a battle-hardened veteran investigative journalist. In Joseph’s words, this is a reporter’s inquiry into the state of the nation. It is in fact, nothing more and nothing less.
A Feast of Vultures attempts to make some semblance of order out of the chaotic bureaucratic system, with its web of middlemen. If you only had a vague idea of the corruption in the creaking government machinery, this book will be a reasonable eye-opener.
For an optimist looking forward to a cleaner, transparent government and a society that is just for all, the book is a primer on where things stand and how far the nation still has to go. It might just turn you into a pessimist. At only about 229 pages long, A Feast of Vultures can leave you longing for more.