WRITING STYLE: 4/5
ENTERTAINMENT QUOTIENT: 4/5
“Adi Shakti, Namo Namah
Sarab Shakti, Namo Namah
Prithum Bhagvati, Namo Namah”
If you love History and Contemporary Fiction, then Chanakya’s Chant is ideal for you. The two subjects are poles apart and, to combine them and make the outcome interesting is a mountainous task. But, Ashwin Sanghi makes it look effortless and does a perfect job. The story oscillates between Ancient India & Modern India. The plot itself is very fast paced and is made even faster by the sudden changes in the themes.
We all know Chanakya. We have read about him in our History textbooks. We have memorised his quotes. We have heard about his work – “Arthashastra”. We know the stories of how he helped Chandragupta Maurya establish the Maurya Empire without which the Indian Geography would have been different. We love to equate him to the likes of Sun Tzu & Machiavelli.
In Chanakya’s Chant, Sanghi takes this greatest strategist of Indian History and makes us question – “What if Chanakya were alive today?”; “What if he were a player in today’s politics?”; “Would his brilliance and principles be relevant in today’s murky politics?” And then, he provides a brilliant answer in the form of Pandit Gangasagar Mishra, a current day politician and king-maker. Added flavours, to an already interesting story, are characters like Chandini, Mishra’s prodigy and puppet. Chandini is the modern day Chandragupta, whom Mishra desires to make a King – The PM of India.
The story of Chanakya’s Chant is one of wit, conceit, deceit, treachery, jealousy and all the other verbs you can think of regarding Indian Politics. Sanghi takes a theme from Chanakya’s Principles, describes it in an ancient setting and then applies it to a modern political theme.
The only negative is the climax. It becomes predictable very early on, which could have been avoided. The final verdict is that it is an interesting read. It is not just a bunch of pages of an author’s imagination. Sanghi makes you think, makes you question the motives of the characters and makes you imagine alternate scenarios.
Grab a copy of Chanakya’s Chant today and get answers to one of the most intriguing questions of all times –
“What if Chanakya were alive today?”