There are many reasons the Indian State has not been able to find an effective and a lasting solution to the menace of religious violence.
Primarily, it is the presence (and the ascendency) of political forces that espouse Hindutva – the majoritarian ideology which denies the minorities the basic human rights.
The Hindutva forces have, in particular, targetted India's Muslims.
Nearly two thousand Indians were killed in the 2002 carnage in Gujarat, and most of them were Muslims. Religious violence of this magnitude is rare but not uncommon in India, where every decade or so, subterranean tensions bubble over, leading to rioting and deaths mostly of Muslims. Where the 2002 Gujarat riots have proven to be different is in the unprecedented number of culprits being convicted for their role in the riots.
This is because of Setalvad’s indomitable courage and dogged persistence and perseverance.
As a friend of the author, Amir Rizvi, notes on the social media, “Teesta Setalvad is the first and only person in India who has sent 117 killers to jail, including the closest friends of Modi.”
Faced with impregnable walls of officialdom, Setalvad’s frustration is palpable in many places in the book.