On 21 November 2007, the city of Kolkata came to a rude, screeching halt as a virulent mob of religious fanatics took to the streets of the city. Armed with a fatwa from their ideologues, the mob demanded that Taslima Nasrin leave the city immediately. While the Kolkata Police stood watching, mere dumb witnesses to such hooliganism, a morally, intellectually and politically bankrupt Left Front government, tottering under the strain of their thirty-year-old backward-looking rule, decided to ban her book and drive her out of Kolkata, a city she has always considered her second home. This inextricable nexus of petty political conspiracies, vote bank politics and minority appeasement saw her being hurriedly shifted, first to Jaipur and then to Delhi, only to be confined to an obscure ‘safe house’ in an undisclosed location and left to face incessant pressure from senior officials and politicians to leave India. Dark, provocative and at times surreal, Exile is a moving and shocking chronicle of Taslima Nasrin’s struggles in India over a period of five months, set against a rising tide of fundamentalism and intolerance that will resonate powerfully with the present socio-political scenario.