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November 24, 2022

My Rating - 4 out of 5 stars

Publisher - R.K. Publication
Genre - Fiction
Publishing year - 2022
Language - Hindi
ISBN - 978-93-91458-15-7
Pages - 270

CIU: Criminals in Uniform by Sanjay Singh and Rakesh Trivedi

Book Review - 

Sanjay Singh and Rakesh Trivedi's novel CIU: Criminals in Uniform is inspired by actual events but cleverly narrated as fiction. The bomb was found outside the residence of Asia's richest person, Kuber, and the whole plot pivots around its investigation.

The story is told from the POV of a crime journalist named Sanjay Trivedi. After police found the abandoned car and checked its contents, they found gelignite sticks, a threatening letter, and the jersey of a cricket team owned by Kuber, which all indicate that someone is trying to scare the Kuber family or wanted them dead. But who?

The case is handled by Yatin Sathe, head of CIU (Crime Intelligence Unit), Mumbai police. He was reinstated after seventeen years and did not hold much respect because of his past deeds. But his ambitions, hunger for power, and the aid of his superior officers make him pretentious. 

But soon, his incompetence starts showing when other agencies like ATS (Anti-Terror Squad) and NIA (National Investigation Agency) take charge and begin their investigations. So, while Sanjay Trivedi is working hard to expose the truth, Sathe already has a bittersweet relationship with him. Between all these, the state and central government have their own agenda to accomplish. 

The agencies didn't cooperate much with each other; a classic issue of getting the credit for solving the case first is witnessed in this story as well. Everyone is fighting for control, hiding pieces of information, and trying to cover up the messes. Still, the case is related to a billionaire, so it can't be taken lightly, as commonly Indian police do. The media also kept a close eye on the case, creating pressure on the authorities. 

The authorities find a link between a co-conspirator, Hasmukh Jain, and Yatin Sathe that changes this case's whole dynamic. However, everything was getting clearer slowly and steadily, and the writers wrote this book most engagingly that you can't stop reading it once you start it. CIU is a book filled with backstabbing, manipulation, and corruption done by the people who swore never to betray the public trust. 

The narration is subtle, but it could have been better. In addition, the language is coarse, so if you're a minor, wait a few years to read this book. However, as it is inspired by the actual events of the Antilia bomb scare that occurred on February 25, 2021, you can easily find loads of information in the public domain and make a connection with this "fictional" story. 

I only knew a titbit about this case before reading this book. So, this proved to be an eye-opener. Still, I was not shocked by learning about the unethical police officers or politicians because everyone in India knows about these things - even the media houses are deceptive. But I always enjoy reading first-hand accounts of information written by investigative correspondents, so I pick this book. 

I read this book in Hindi, but soon it will be published in English and Marathi. Also, Sanjay Singh's debut work, Reporter ki Diary, is adapted into web series by Sony Liv, named Scam 2003: The Telgi Story. So, keep an eye out for this too. 

Overall, I enjoyed reading the authors' creation and recommend it to those interested in learning about Ambani's bomb scare case in a fictionalized manner.

Grab your copy from - Amazon IN 

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