Flying Blind
(Penguin 2021)

India's Quest for Global Leadership

In recent years, India has repeatedly expressed its ambitions of becoming a global power – or 'jagat guru'. Yet, many believe that India’s economic troubles at home are far more pressing and that foreign policy aspirations can wait.

But is a proactive foreign policy really a ‘luxury’ for India, to be postponed until the economy develops; or is it, in fact, a prerequisite for economic growth in a globalized world? Why should the average Indian citizen care about foreign policy – and how can a proactive foreign policy help Indians become more secure and prosperous, both at home and abroad?

Flying Blind takes a unique and honest look at India's foreign policy performance, in terms of meeting the dreams and aspirations of a very globalized and young country. Scanning our ever-changing world from East to West, through travels and debates across countries and continents, Zeeshan defines India’s national interests and needs, while drawing up a strategy for a more productive relationship with the outside world.

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What Readers Say


I don't think there's anything out there quite like Flying Blind. A lot of our foreign policy books are very scholarly and somewhat turgid. This one doesn’t need to yield to any scholar in terms of the depth of its research and facts, but it is anything but turgid. It is lively, it is provocative – both in some of its judgements and in the way in which they are expressed – and his insight is well captured in the book... He’s made some unconventional analyses. He’s come up with bold and provocative statements, but that’s what makes the book so interesting and readable.

Shashi Tharoor, Indian MP and author

Official Launch

Presented by City Book Leaders in association with Kautilya School of Public Policy

Watch the official launch of Flying Blind, featuring a keynote speech by Shashi Tharoor and a panel discussion with Navtej Sarna (former Indian ambassador to the United States) and Prateek Kanwal (co-founder of Kautilya School of Public Policy), moderated by Maya Mirchandani (former NDTV journalist)