Writing Memoirs is not an easy undertaking, especially for one who is well past 80 when human faculties become frail, the will falters and memory fades. Layers over layers of experience stored in the consciousness get dusty and vague, emotions overtake rationality and a realistic reading of one’s own past becomes difficult. One tends to be more subjective than objective as age advances. However, that is obviously not the case with Mr. B.S.Das, author of Memoirs of an Indian Diplomat. His rendering of his life’s ups and downs in a world that itself is in a constant flux is very faithful, driven as it is by a sharp memory, intellectual honesty and a touch of humility which help in discerning the kernel of truth from a confused mass of detail. His subtle sense of humour further lends to his tale a special flavour, making his Memoirs all the more attractive. B.S. Das was born in the mid-twenties of the last century in a traditionally Provincial Civil Service family in Uttar Pradesh. His grandfather had entered the PCS in 1865, not much after the British Government took control of East India Company’s governance structures and converted the territorial gains of the latter into the most important colony of the British Empire. His father followed suit as also his three brothers out of ten siblings his father had, but Brij aspired for something higher.
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