Tracking Uddhav’s journey from advertising photographer to Maha CM

“Trail of the Tiger” tracks the personal and political journey of Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray against the backdrop of the changing narrative of Hindutva, and new connotations to Hindutva’s subnational plot, with the rise of Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a new Hindu “Hriday Samrat”.

Thackeray’s trail from a professional advertising photographer to Maharashtra’s Chief Minister is not just his story. It is the story of saffron ‘tiger’ Balasaheb Thackeray’s own family Mahabharata for political power and legacy that left the patriarch helpless during his sunset years.

It is the story of one of the biggest upheavals in Indian politics, where breaking a 30-year-old alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the Shiv Sena joined Sonia Gandhi’s camp, holding Sharad Pawar’s finger. It is also the story of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s dilemma to deal with the tug of war in the Hindutva camp.

Based on news analysis, “Trail of the Tiger” (Bloomsbury) unpacks media content and explores intertextuality to bring readers the authentic account of the Shiv Sena’s saffron to secular trajectory under the leadership of Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray.

The author, Radheshyam Jadhav, is an award-winning journalist and communication researcher with more than 20 years of experience in field reporting. He holds a PhD in journalism and communication science and has been a British Chevening Gurukul fellow at the London School of Economics and Political Science. A two-time winner of the prestigious Ramnath Goenka Excellence in Journalism Award, he has also been an Asia Journalism Fellow at the Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.

Jaddhav has over 20 awards and scholarships, including the Statesman Award for Rural Reporting, to his credit in these two decades. With a proven track record of writing about politics, gender issues, health, agriculture, environment, and rural and urban development issues, his research in journalism and communication has been based on extensive field visits. He has covered politics from Panchayat to Parliament elections while working with national newspapers, including The Hindu Business Line, The Times of India and The Indian Express.