A Case of Exploding Mangoes
A Case of Exploding Mangoes
Book for April 2011
Group 1
Case of Exploding Mangoes is a comic novel by the Pakistani writer Mohammed Hanif based on the plane crash that killed General Muhammad Zia ul-Haq, former president of Pakistan. The book has a dark satirical style.

The central theme of the book is a fictitious story behind the real life plane crash which killed General Zia, dictator of Pakistan from 1977 to 1988, about which there are many conspiracy theories. After witnessing a tank parade in Bahawalpur, Zia left the small Punjabi town in the C-130 Hercules aircraft designated 'Pak One'.

Shortly after a smooth take-off, the control tower loses contact with the aircraft. Witnesses who saw the plane in the air later claimed it was flying erratically, before nosediving and exploding on impact, killing General Zia and several other senior army generals, in addition to Arnold Raphel, the US Ambassador to Pakistan, and General Herbert M. Wassom, the head of the U.S. Military aid mission to Pakistan. Zia had ruled Pakistan for 11 years prior to his death.

The book develops through the eyes of the narrator, Ali Shigri, a Junior Officer in the Pakistani Air Force who seeks revenge for the death of his father, which he is convinced, although apparently a suicide, was orchestrated by General Zia himself.
About the Author
Mohammed Hanif
is a Pakistani writer and journalist. He was born in Okara. He graduated from Pakistan Air Force Academy as a pilot officer but subsequently left to pursue a career in journalism. He initially worked for Newsline, The Washington Post and India Today. In 1996, he moved to London to work for the BBC. Later, he became the head of the BBC's Urdu service in London. He graduated from the University of East Anglia in 2005, and moved back to Pakistan in 2008.