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'The good that Rao did lives on... so does the harm'

Vinay Sitapati had the advantage of having access to the personal papers of P V Narasimha Rao; these included the information or assessments on situations and personalities given to him by the Intelligence Bureau

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P V Narasimha Rao

Hamid Ansari 



Hamid Ansari

To students of literature, Boswell's Life of Samuel Johnson is often cited as the model. There could be other models. Political biography is a genre in itself. All require knowledge of the subject, of the conditions in which he or she functioned, the evidence available from documents, archival material and personal papers, the evidence or recollections of contemporaries, and a capacity and willingness for candour however disconcerting. A good recent example is Tom Bower's Broken Vows, depicting in graphic detail Tony Blair's abuse of power as prime minister.

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First Published: Sat, July 16 2016. 21:47 IST

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