This is surprising because Pune then was the most powerful force in the politics of South Asia.
How the young man of just eighteen must have run for his life...did he stumble and fall while running? Which all places he ran to before he got killed? How messy the crime scene must have looked...who cleaned it? How was Peshwa's body prepared for cremation? How was the news received by the stalwarts of the Peshwa court? Which exact Marathi words were used by the plotters of the murder? Did anybody speak like Brutus and Antony? Was it raining that day in Pune?
There is so much tragic drama in all this...
I also think that the event has a great significance as a turning point in Maharashtra's politics.
People, led by Brahmins, became audacious in their acts to grab the power. They started getting confident that they would eventually get away even with a regicide.
John Gray says: "The true lesson of Machiavelli is that the alternative to politics is not law but unending war." Maybe this murder averted a revolt or an immediate start of an unending war among various factions that existed in Peshwa's regime.
Another lesson, and a shocking one, of Machiavelli's 'The Prince' is not that politics demands dirty (bloody?) hands, but that politicians shouldn’t care.
I feel every political event in Maharashtra's politics, that ordinary people judge as a 'shameful' one, has its roots in that afternoon of August 1773. A sitting Brahmin 'king' was brutally slaughtered, in his own house, during one of the biggest Hindu festivals, apparently on the orders of his uncle and right under his nose.
The uncle went on to live for another ten years and continued to play a significant role in the politics of Maharashtra until his death. His son, Baji Rao II, went on to become the 'king' in due course and 'served' the people of India the longest among all the Peshwas.
In India, today, all this does not sound strange at all.
Should Vijay Tendulkar (विजय तेंडुलकर) have paid more attention to this political murder than the episode of Ghashiram Kotwal (घाशीराम कोतवाल) to write his political satire?