Shrabani was born in Calcutta and grew up in Dhaka, Kathmandu and Delhi. She graduated in History from St Stephen’s College, Delhi and completed her Masters from Delhi University. In 1983 she began her career as a trainee journalist in the bustling offices of The Times of India in Bombay. She moved to London in 1987, and has since then been the correspondent of the Calcutta-based newspaper Ananda Bazar Patrika and The Telegraph. Over her long career she has done exclusive interviews with many eminent people including Benazir Bhutto, Sheikh Hasina, Salman Rushdie, Nirad C Chaudhuri and Viv Richards.

She has always combined her journalism with her love of history and all her books have evolved from her observations about the shared histories of India and Britain. Shrabani has been interviewed on BBC Radio 4’s flagship Woman’s Hour programme and appeared on BBC Television’s Saturday Kitchen and The One Show. She is soon to appear with celebrity chef Heston Blumental in his series Great British Food. She has been invited to speak at several literary festivals including the Cheltenham Literature Festival, Bath Literature Festival, Words by the Water, Keswick, Cambridge History Festival, Jaipur Literature Festival, Indian Summer in Chicago, Seattle and Vancouver and the Lahore Literary Festival.  

In 2010, Shrabani set up the Noor Inayat Khan Memorial Trust to ensure that Noor’s story and sacrifice were preserved for the next generation. The Memorial was unveiled in London’s Gordon Square by Princess Anne in November 2012. It was followed by the release of a Royal Mail stamp in honour of Noor in March 2014. Her work to preserve the memory of the World War II heroine has been commended in the House of Lords.

She lives in London with her daughters.


Hear Shrabani Basu discuss her books at SFU, Vancouver –