The Low-Down On Life, Death And Most Things In-Between
I would like to be remembered as someone who made people smile.' One of the great icons of our time, Khushwant Singh, 95, is a man of contradictions. An agnostic who's well-versed in the holy scriptures; a vocal champion of free speech who supported the Emergency; a 'dirty old man' who sees 'the world in a grain of sand and beauty in a wild flower'. Born in 1915 in pre-Partition Punjab, Khushwant Singh has been witness to almost all the major events in modern Indian history and has known most of the figures who have shaped it. In a career spanning over six decades as writer, editor and journalist, his views have been provocative and controversial, but they have also been profound, deeply perceptive and always compelling. Khushwant Singh has never been less than honest. In Absolute Khushwant, India's grand old man of letters tells us about his life, his loves and his work. He writes on happiness, faith and honesty. And, for the first time, about his successes and failures, his strengths and weaknesses, his highs and lows. He tells us what makes him tick and the secret of his longevity; he confesses his deepest fears and what he holds dear. He writes about sex, marriage, worship and death; the people he's admired and detested. With personal anecdotes and rare photographs, Absolute Khushwant is uncompromising, moving, and straight from the heart.
Khushwant Singh is India's best-known writer and columnist. He
has been founder-editor of Yojana and editor of the Illustrated
Weekly of India, the National Herald and the Hindustan Times. He is
the author of classics such as Train to Pakistan, I Shall Not Hear the
Nightingale and Delhi. His latest novel, The Sunset Club, written
when he was 95, was published by Penguin Books in 2010. His
non-fiction includes the classic two-volume A History of the Sikhs, a
number of translations and works on Sikh religion and culture,
Delhi, nature, current affairs and Urdu poetry. His autobiography,
Truth, Love and a Little Malice, was published by Penguin Books in
Khushwant Singh was a member of Parliament from 1980 to
1986. He was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 1974 but returned
the decoration in 1984 in protest against the storming of the
Golden Temple in Amritsar by the Indian Army. In 2007, he was
awarded the Padma Vibhushan.
Among the other awards he has received are the Punjab Ratan,
the Sulabh International award for the most honest Indian of the
year, and honorary doctorates from several universities. He passed
away in 2014 at the age of 99.