Political Journeys in Health

Essays by and for Amit Sengupta

Prabir Purkayastha

Edited by Prabir Purkayastha, Indranil, Richa Chintan


LeftWord Books, New Delhi, 2021

Language: English

324 pages

5.5 x 8.5 inches

Price $25.00
Book Club Price $18.00

‘Amit Sengupta dedicated his life to people’s causes, and for a just and humane world. Trained as a doctor, he fought for a world that does not profit from illness. Amit was a comrade, a man of science, equally comfortable with theory and practice.’ – Sitaram Yechury

‘Amit was a leader and was central to many of the global activities of the People’s Health Movement. When he said, “You see, it’s like this . . . ,” you knew that you were going to suddenly see the core of the issue with greater clarity. He knew the burning need for political organization to challenge what is happening in health, and beyond health as well, because we are a subset of the bigger system.’ – David Sanders

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Amit Sengupta (1958–2018) believed the job of a doctor was not simply to treat a sick individual, but to build a society in which health is a fundamental right of all citizens. In these times of the Covid-19 pandemic, such a perspective is more relevant than ever. The essays in this book trace how Sengupta's work and politics were integral to the history of the health movement, and how this movement evolved from ‘medicines for all’ to ‘health for all’.

Sengupta's work of a lifetime is supplemented and framed by his colleagues in the movement: David Sanders, SP Shukla, Prabir Purkayastha, Satyajit Rath, Sarojini Nadimpally, Indranil, David Legge, Kajal Bharadwaj and many others.

Prabir Purkayastha

Prabir Purkayastha is an engineer and a science activist in the power, telecom and software sectors. He is a founding member of the Delhi Science Forum. He is the author of Knowledge as Commons: Towards Inclusive Science and Technology (LeftWord 2023) and co-author, along with Vijay Prashad, of Enron Blowout: Corporate Capitalism and Theft of the Global Commons (LeftWord 2002), and along with Ninan Koshy, M.K. Bhadrakumar, of Uncle Sam’s Nuclear Cabin (LeftWord 2007). He is co-editor with Indranil and Richa Chintan of Political Journeys in Health: Essays by and for Amit Sengupta (LeftWord 2021). He is the founder of Newsclick.in.


Indranil is a health economist and activist trained in Economics and Public Health. He is associated with the Jan Swasthya Abhiyan. He also teaches Public Health and Development Economics in OP Jindal Global University, Sonipat.

Richa Chintan

Richa Chintan is an activist associated with Jan Swasthya Abhiyan. She works full time with the People’s Health Movement organization.