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4.6 out of 5 stars
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4.6 out of 5 stars
Veerappan: Chasing the Brigand
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on 7 July 2017
Thought, Strategy and Action are the three traits that this book elucidates and I am able to apply these principles to be successful in the Corporate Life especially when you are in the front-line Sales roles devising strategies to create penetration into an account to net business and revenue into the company.

Every now and then I am motivated to flip through a few pages for self motivation when by batteries are down and the thought process meanders to think " I am putting so much efforts but the result is not being seen". The Law of Karma is absolutely reinforced in this book that despite the best efforts in Boston, Cocoon only succeeded to crowning glory. Hence it has taught me patience.

Another important inference in one of the pages written by the Author is "Activity cannot be misconstrued for Progress" This is absolutely true in my profession where how much ever you do multiple sales calls, only result matters.. Hats off to all these life lessons K.Vijaykumar Sir.

I had the privilege and pleasure to report to you during the implementation of AFIS (Automated Fingerprint Identification System) in Chennai City Police, when you were the Commissioner. Nostalgic memories go through my mind for every case we cracked and reported to you when I used to come to your office with the then Fingerprint DSP Mr.Ganesan and Inspector R.D.Vijaykumar with solved cases and meeting you in your cabin with Mr.M.K.Jha IPS. Thanks a ton for this invaluable experience that has helped me scale greater heights in my career.
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on 9 April 2017
Fast paced book... Vijaykumar has done a great job in describing the life of a long hunted bandit. His imagination and creativity in explaining events that he couldn't experience directly is appreciable. However, at certain places it becomes fictional especially reading veerapan's mind. But he has done justification to most of the events. Will be interesting to people who know the places very well as they could connect to the background easily. Overall good read, fast paced, gripping book. Must read.
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on 5 November 2017
This is not a book review, but my research and analysis.

The quote in the Introduction was very much inspiring "It's like a football team. All eleven play, but one scores the goal". After finishing the book, I had mixed feelings and made me to do further research. This analysis raised a lot of questions and I doubted whether the goal was scored by fair means or the STF had given Veerappan to taste his own medicine. If you re-read the book, you will feel Veerappan deserved it, but his partners in crime have escaped.

In the Rise of a Brigand, it's mentioned that Veerappan had invited a rival gang for a meal. After the meal, his men opened fire immediately, thus wiping out the competition. But, Nakkheeran gives a different view in his Part 2 Interview.

In A Blow to Veerappan, if you recall the August 1992 incident, Naika pulled Harikrishna and Shakeel and their white Ambassador had multiple holes. It looks very much similar to Veerappan's death in a white Tempo Traveller filled with bullet holes.

22 - charred bodies in the Good Friday Massacre will assure us that Veerappan got what he deserved.

Gopal Hosur, the STF SP (May 1993), who had 55 sutures in his neck after the ambush in MM Hills, shares his experience in a TEDx event.

The article Veerappan’s ghost comes back to haunt the police, says the claims by Gopal Hosur for the President’s Police Medal for Gallantry were fake.

In The STF's First Casualty - Senthil, at the end of a day-long futile jungle search, Senthil would charge up a tall rock and scream at the top of his voice, "Veerappan! Where are you? I have come for you". During an operation at Sorgam Valley, a bullet tunnelled through his left eye and penetrated his brain. Veerappan too faced the same on his fateful day. "No mission haunts you more than the one from which you return carrying the stiffening body of a buddy, even if you are a commando". Veerappan's death will be the only answer for all those sacrifices.

In the Unfriendly Fire, when you read the line Dei suttuteiyada (You've shot me) will send shock waves.

Earlier, I heard about Vachathi incident but didn't knew much about it. After reading the Solagar Thotti book review, I felt this was one of the major incidents but was not mentioned much in the book. I searched through the book for the word Vachathi and didn't find it. Then, I searched for STF and found Vaachatti mentioned on Page 130. The Justice for Vachathi article from FrontLine gives a detailed view of the Vachathi incident.

In The Last Victim, we don't have a confirmed answer for the former Karnataka minister H. Nagappa's death. In the Nakkheeran's Part - 1 Interview (at 17:13), he explains that Nagappa's wife had come to meet Jayalalitha. But, Jayalalitha insisted to discuss anything other than Nagappa's release.

In the Contact, at Last, Red took out a lottery ticket and tore into half. He handed over one piece to Mr. X and had the other half. "This will serve as Anna's travel ticket. When your man meets ours, they should match the edges. Arrange for a vehicle to bring out four people". This reminds me of the movie Ayan where a similar strategy was used for smuggling.

The revealations from Veerappan's Astro chart is very interesting.

The map in the last cover doesn't make any sense in the beginning. After reading, it gives a clear picture and the author deserves special appreciation for bringing out this. Adding a Timeline of activities and events in the future editions will be easy for reference.

*Unanswered Questions*
1. A book review motivated me to do more research on Veerappan and he too raised a lot of questions.

2. Page 89 - Veerappan's younger brother, Arjunan was arrested by the STF. The Karnataka Police demanded that he be handed over to them for interrogation. Arjunan and Veerappan's 2 aides were formally transferred into the custody of the Karnataka Police and were taken away in a police van. When the van moved about 40 Km, they heard strange sounds from the back. When the back of the van was opened, he found them to have taken Cyanide capsules and died instantaneously. Even a layman knows it's not possible to get Cyanide in Police custody.

3. Veerappan's sister Mariammal had committed suicide. So, he brutally beheaded Srinivas, the Karnataka forest official, blaming him for the suicide of his sister.

4. The death of former Karnataka minister H. Nagappa is not yet known.

5. Page 130 - In 1992, it was alleged that STF personnel entered these two villages on the pretext of searching for smuggled sandalwood and Veerappan, and assaulted and raped some of the locals. The involvement of the STF in the Chinnampathi case was never proved. Ultimately, not a sinlge STF person was held guilty.

The article from TamilWeek raises a lot of Troubling questions about the killing of Veerappan. It clearly says that The Commission recommended among other things the immediate compensation of Indian Rs. 10,000 each to 19 women raped by STF personnel.

6. Page 223 - In The Longest Day, it's mentioned that a stretcher was added and there were 3 portraits of deities. Lord Venkateswara in the middle had a camera fixed on his forehead, to pass on real-time information.

Page 232 - In The Shootout at Padi, The Sweet Box was meant to block the path of the oncoming Cocoon. It also housed three tech experts, who would recieve signals from the surveillance camera concealed inside the ambulance. It was their job to confirm that the target was inside the vehicle before we intercepted it.

Page 235 - In the T minus 120 seconds, The tech team has confirmed four people in the back of Cocoon. But the picture from the camera is blurred, can't make out their faces. If the footage from the Camera was released, then it would put an end to all the doubts and controversies.

7. Page 209 - In Planting a Mole, a new character Mr. X gets introduced. According to Veerappan, Mr. X had links with certain Sri Lanka based Tamil radicals, and could use them to procure guns. During the book launch (at 21:27), when the author was questioned about Mr. X, he gave a reply which can't be taken lightly.

8. In a very old interview, Walter Devaram has mentioned that it's impossible for Veerappan to have AK-47.
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on 1 April 2017
Wow. Great book. Just finished reading it. Would like to get it for my mom, her birthday is on 6th.
A beaut of a thriller.
Very, very well written and extremely readable.
Thanks Mr. Vijayakumar for sharing this with all of us.
Hope you write many more of your experiences!
Kudos to you, sir.
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on 25 May 2017
The book is an excellent read, especially for a person who is interested in crime investigation. The book is not a work of fiction, as it is about the author's audacious plan to capture a forest poacher and brigand Veerappan. The book's initial chapters gives the reader a very accurate picture about the anti-Hero, the forest area in which he operated, his operating style and even his key gang members. The author relies on the inputs given by many police officers - especially the mid level/ranking officers who were actually on the ground, trying to bring the brigand to justice. The next few chapters also descrive the various attempts made by two state's police forces to trap Veerappan and how he managed to out-smart the police officers; quite often trapping them into ambushes.

Later part of the book; those are the events which happened after the author took over the operation to trap the forest brigand. These chapters can be read with the same excitement, felt when reading a fast moving investigation story book (Day of the jackal?). The change in the police tactics, the stressful job of creating a local intelligence network, training the forces to move as small teams and improvement of communication facilities are all explained in detail. The book clearly takes the reader through the tedious process of getting the brigand, and pinning him down to a small area of operation. The author has also taken the liberty to write a few paragraphs thinking from the view point of the brigand, Veerappan. In very few places, the author also mentions about the unheard aspects of Veerappan; that of a simple village man who gets nostalgic when showing (from a distance) a journalist, the village in which he spent his child hood, and that of a father who missed his two children.

The book also is not a self-glorification story by the author. He at every point, clearly recognises and gives credit to the fellow police officers (irrespective of their ranks) who also played very crucial roles in the entire operation to trap Veerappan.
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on 15 July 2017
An excellent book.. details the fight against multiple odds.. the small and painful steps taken by our security forces that in the way to winning the battle against a mighty foe.. for a casual guy who gets news from tv and newspaper..A bandit killed might look as simple as a chance encounter..Hit and run etc.. but this book details the planning..Thinking.. bravery..Guts.. courage..conviction.. leadership that goes into victory .. and all of that in a crisp.. consise.. interesting manner with not even a hint of gloating ..
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on 26 February 2017
Amazing book. Started reading the book and completed in 24 hours. It was much more engrossing than a Bollywood thriller. Very good narration by Mr. Vijayakumar sir. Look forward to more of his writings on other encounters during his 40 year service.
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on 20 March 2017
First of all Salute to the Author Mr K. Vijayakumar IPS. You are considered among officers and people as RAMBO and no doubt you eliminated the Anti Social Element like Veerappan. About the Book, first thing this is the testimonial for all officers and Troops who worked for overcome and eliminate Veerappan. Superb Narration and Language is easy to read. Thanks for the book and in these days when people Eulogize anarchism and anti social elements, this book will come as eye opener where one can understand the sacrifices and struggle what police forces undergo.

Thanks for the BOOK SIR. You are a Legend and sir i would love to get the autograph on this book sometime in near future.
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on 31 October 2017
After watching Vijay Kumar recent interview about Veerappan in which he praised Veerappan leadership and other positive capabilities made me to buy this book. Though the book havent provided much insight about STF atrocities done to the villagers in around the forest definitely it provides clear insight how best both the sides Veerappan and STF fought each other for such long period. So many scarifies, brutal murders, brilliant plans, landscape / terrain difficulties, strategies and finally nothing short than a action packed thriller movie. Some times i felt like watching Ravanan Manirathnam movie. Vijay Kumar looks like an complete police officer life along with a pleasant family.
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on 21 April 2017
Loved every bit of the book. The experience of Mr. Vijay Kumar, right from his training period until the encounter of the brigand was penned so beautifully. The part were Mr.Srinivas the STF officer of Karnataka's cadre assassination brought tears not because he was killed but the act after the murder. Veerapan's eyesight was like that of eagle's, having such a powerful eyesight was a fortune to him, which had helped him in the palar incident I was awed by his accuracy, but was sorry for our stf personnels who were bombed. The killing of his own infant as a mother brought tears again.
A real hero Mr.Vijaykumar IPS had an opportunity to meet him and get the book signed by him.
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