Exactly a week since I'm done with reading Revolution 2020. This isn't exactly the best of the works from Chetan Bhagat. But trust me this isn't as bad as 'one night at the call centre' either. I had set high expectations sky high probably and that could be one of the reasons for my disappointment. Nevertheless the book had its moments. There were more than few instances where you say to yourself 'that's so damn true' and you wonder how could he do that. That's what Chetan Bhagat is known for and time and again he proves that he is just too good at doing that. Like every other book of his, Chetan Bhagat chose to the narrate the story in first person. Revolution 2020 sets itself the holy town of India, Varanasi. Its a tale about two guys ( friends??! Not sure if they can be called one, however the teaser says so!) and a girl. Gopal, Raghav and Aarti, the three major characters that the novel revolves around. The story is narrated by Gopal who happens to be the youngest director of an engineering college Gangatech by the time he meets the author and opens himself to the author in one of the most unexpected circumstances that's quite hard to believe (Probably he just wanted to be heard.Who knows?).Well this was all for the starters who haven't heard of the book or haven't actually got a chance to read it. I know folks that you wouldn't want a review nor to hear the story from, there are much better people to do the job. But for the better understanding of things I would like to brief you up one the characters.
Gopal- Happens to be the narrator of the story. More often that not you would find him on the wrong side of the law and logic. But still you can't help but pity for him and the end. Hard to say if he's right or wrong. His love for Aarti over the years doesn't seem to have changed. Well but you can't exactly say as he is the author and no one would blindly give you the facts of whats what.
Raghav School friend of Gopal. Who makes it big in his life by cracking IIT in his very first attempt. Comes across as someone with very ambitions and who would want to change the country. So determined that he could spark a change with his journalism. A man of grit and integrity. Not an ideal boy friend material by the way ;). Space in the story is pretty limited but leaves an impact in his own way.
Aarti - According to the Gopal shes unmistakably beautiful. One who could win a beauty pageant crown with out any pain. ( Not sure if his love for her which made him say so :P. Love is blind they say don't they ).Aspiring airhostess. Mysterious. Confusing. Perhaps one of those few Indian girls who doesn't seem to understand where to draw a line.As tagline suggests, the book talks about Love, Corruption, Ambition. Lets save the best part of the book to be discussed at the end which obviously is Love ofcourse. That leaves us with two things Corruption and Ambition. Its like one drives the other. You get corrupted only when you become over-ambitious if I may say, the drive to become all powerful and rich in short time. This book deals with the ambitions of the students to become IITians and of parents to see their children as one amongst those few thousands of people who make it into them. There is a scene where Gopal says
when you don't qualify for an IIT even a watchman can make you feel small and you lower your head down in shame. The author tries to take a dig at the way IITians are made, through small and simple things that are hard to go unnoticed Gopal @ Kota factory as Gopal's chat name. Raghav's character is one which sets him apart from the rest of the flock, who being graduated from BHU and gets into journalism, wanting to change the society. Standing up for a good cause always results in struggle and sometimes I wonder if its worth all the pain he took! Corruption is pretty rampant in the country and we all know it. Every morning we wake up to read news about a new scam out. But we started to live with it haven't we. Its goes without saying like the
Sun rises in the east and the politicians are corrupt.We are not bothered of it anymore. What I would like to say is presenting the problem alone doesn't help the cause, offering a viable solution does. I expected to find one from Chetan atleast through this story when he said this book speaks of corruption. I would say all he did was bring out the irony in setting up an engineering college. All this episode was dealt in 80s n 90s filmy style. Only difference was the narrator gets involved with it. On this note I was disappointed. The most exciting part of the book for me is Love. A tweet of Chetan reads like this
"How can you understand girls so well and so better much than they do?"asked my wife. This really rose my interest on the book and after reading the book I felt every bit of the statement holds true. Gopal talks about the ability of girls to behave as if nothing happened when theres so much have happened just a few minutes back, their ability to carry out multiple conversations, to evade topics at ease, and more importantly of their ways of messaging, and waiting games. Every time I read those lines I thought, this is so ridiculously true. I at least fortunately or unfortunately have met a few people who more have possessed all of this abilities in some measure. Chetan for these things I surely bow down to you. You really seem to have known girls so well :P. And through Gopals character the author tries to depict when lose your loved ones, attaining everything else in life would mean nothing to you at the end of the day. As I completed reading the book, my heart went out for Gopal. He might have achieved so much money and fame in life but he ended up being a loser. But only relief is he is loser with innocence and purity deep down :-)!