Virbhadra pens autobiography’s first draft

Shimla: Not sparing political rivals and self, union minister Virbhadra Singh, who has penned the first draft of his autobiography says there are not many left around who have been active participants in the political history of Himachal Pradesh.

Speaking to Hill Post, he said, “most chapters of the autobiography are ready.”

Starting out with the history of Bushair royal state, schooling at BCS, a boarding school in British Simla, pangs of assimilation of the Bushair state into the India union, college at Delhi (St Stephens), a legal battle for succession as scion of Bushair, abolition of privy purses of royal families – all woven into the formation of Himachal Pradesh as a political entity for a background, the book is expected to reveal much about the history of the hill state and the important people who played a role in it.

At school

Incidentally, Virbhadra Singh is perhaps one of the very few members of the old royalty who is still active in politics.

On one occasion, giving an insight into life at boarding school in pre-independence days, Singh who is fond of non-vegetarian food said, “at school I was a vegetarian because under British headmasters, beef was regularly served to all non-vegetarian students.”

Telling it all, he says, “I have tried to be as truthful as I could and have not even spared myself in the course of writing the first draft.”

Campaigning in 1962 elections
Singh at 77 is not retiring from politics yet. In 1962, being one of the youngest to be elected to parliament, having been a minister of state in Indira Gandhi’s cabinet, a five time chief minister and currently a union cabinet minister, the autobiography would have a lot to reveal.

“If I have been harsh to myself, I have not spared others also,” he adds.

Not having settled on a publisher, he says, “I’m revising some of the chapters but the autobiography would only be published after I retire from politics.

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