Walking With Lions: Tales From A Diplomatic Past is an assortment of 50 articles that were published in Mid Day. The articles told the humorous and memorable incidents that took place in the long and illustrious career of K. Natwar Singh. The book has been published by Harper India.
The collection of articles that are present in this edition was first published between 2011 and 2012 in Mid Day. The stories revolve around politicians, diplomats, leaders, and celebrities from the entertainment and art industry. The author, however does not only stick to India. He has covered people from all over the world. The name of the book comes from a real incident that took place in Ethiopia. The Ethiopian Government demanded that two lions should accompany ambassadors who represented their countries and wanted to meet the emperor. This statement made many ambassadors uneasy. But, Indian ambassador, R.G.Rajwade visited Ethiopia to give his credentials to the emperor and went with confidence in spite of being accompanied by two vicious lions. When the Chief of Protocol asked whether Mr. Rajwade was aware of the two lions following him, he replied that his eyes were focused on the Imperial Emperor and as a result, could not see anything else. This won the respect of Ethiopians for Mr. Rajwade.
This book is filled with humorous sketches involving many World Leaders such as Indira Gandhi, Fidel Castro, Richard Nixon and Yasser Arafat to name a few. One particular sketch involving Ugandan Dictator Idi Amin is the funniest. Ida wanted to name the country after himself. One of his ministers came forward and advised him not to do so as it would embarrass the countrymen. When he asked why, the minister said that since the people of Cyprus were called Cypriots, the people of Idi would be called Idiots. The author also has mentioned memories of his encounters with Nelson Mandela, Don Bradman, M.F.Hussain, C. Rajgopalachari and Dev Anand with admiration and respect.
The author, K. Natwar Singh, is a prominent author, diplomat and politician. He served in the office of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi from 1966 to 1971 and was General Secretary of the Nam Summit held in Delhi in March 1983. He was awarded the Padma Bhushan for his service to the country in 1984. Some of his other notable books include E.M.Forster: A Tribute and The Magnificent Maharaja among others. He is currently residing in New Delhi. The paperback edition of Walking With Lions: Tales From A Diplomatic Past is available for purchase online with an ISBN-10 number of 9350293463 an ISBN-13 of 978-9350293461.