Revolution 2020 : Another Bestseller From Chetan Bhagat

ogee By ogee, 10th Dec 2011 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Reviews>Books>Romance

Revolution 2020 is the newest novel coming from the pen of India’s most popular and best-selling author, Chetan Bhagat. This article gives you a summary and insights into this exciting novel.

Revolution 2020

After Two States, Chetan Bhagat has come up with another new novel, Revolution 2020. Already hugely popular amongst the youth, his books sell like hot cakes and this novel too has not been an exception.

The story is primarily centered around three characters, three childhood friends named Gopal, Aarti and Raghav and their journey through the testing phases of love and life.

The story begins with the author, that is, Chetan Bhagat’s encounter with Gopal who is now the Director of Ganga Tech Engineering College and how Gopal, in tears and admitted in hospital after a heavy bout of drinking, begins to narrate his life’s story to the author.

The narrative thereafter continues in the first person and we, the readers, see and experience things through Gopal’s eyes. However the author writes so deftly that though Gopal narrates 99% of the story, we are able to detach ourselves from him and judge him critically in a manner, almost reminiscent of Brecht’s ‘Alienation effect’.

Hilarious in parts, the book fully captures the reader’s attention from the beginning of the story.

The setting of the story is the holy town of Varanasi which becomes infested with corruption, thanks to corrupt politicians, teachers, professors, party-leaders, policemen, workers, newspaper editors and the likes.

Gopal meets Aarti at school when he is in junior class and from there grows a solid friendship. Gopal is from a poor family and although his father tries with all his savings and assets to make him crack the J.E.E. and the A.I.E.E.E.,he proves to be a failure. His father even sends him to Kota to study there at any of the reputed coaching centers but Gopal still fails to do justice to his father’s dream. All he can do is think of Aarti whom he loves more than himself. In the meanwhile his friend Raghav has cracked the J.E.E.and gets into one of the top colleges. While Gopal is away at Kota a relationship develops between Raghav and Aarti and later on coming back to Varanasi, Gopal not only loses his father but also observes his friends kissing passionately.

He keeps sulking and is determined to get Aarti somehow but the more he pressurizes her, the more distant she gets. By a curious turn of circumstances, Gopal meets M.L.A.Shukla-ji who wields great power in the city of Varanasi and after a lot of bribing of professors, officials, and exercising of muscle power etc, they finally are able to set up an engineering college called Ganga Tech on Gopal’s empty agricultural land. Gopal himself becomes the Director of the college.

The novel shows how Gopal succumbs to corruption whereas his friend Raghav fights it. Despite getting a job offer from Infosys after passing out, Raghav chooses to follow his dream of becoming a newspaper reporter.

He devotes himself completely to his work and is determined on weeding out corruption from society. He believes that a revolution will begin in 2020 and everybody has to work towards it. According to Raghav the revolution should start from the city of Varanasi itself.

When Raghav writes an eye-opening account in the ‘Dainik’, one of the dailies about how money from the government funds for a river project suspiciously disappeared and crores of rupees went into the building of the engineering college, eyebrows are raised and MLA Shukla lands up in jail, though his jail term is only farcical, set up by the party itself to appease the public before elections. He is shown to be at great luxury in jail with a television set and delicious food and policemen at his service.

The novel exposes corruption in India and how it is depriving the poor and feeding the rich. In fact the picture it shows is shocking in itself. It raises several questions in our minds about the state of politics in our country which is dominating everything from education to the media.

Gopal lives a life of great luxury and meets Aarti more and more at coffee shops, goes for boat rides with her but cannot make her agree to become his girlfriend. Though she finally agrees it is only because Raghav hardly has time for her and their relationship grows distant and they often quarrel.

Aarti gets a job as a Guest Relations Officer at a hotel and finally one night they get into a physical relationship. Aarti expresses how lonely she is and says that she cannot cheat her boyfriend. Gopal resolves to himself vent out his anger on Raghav for writing the scandalous report on their college in the newspaper as well as inform him that Aarti and he are no longer a couple.

Meanwhile with the help of a corrupt line of editors and newspaper-men who oil Gopal since he gives the maximum number of advertisements in their paper, Raghav is chucked out if his job. However his determination does not bow down. He brings out a new two page daily called Revolution 2020 in which his team works hard to bring out stories of corruption and malpractice in society. His office too is one day ransacked by Shukla-ji’s men.

When Gopal finally visits him he is unable to tell Raghav on the face what he had originally intended to. He is struck with surprise at his own adequacy and corrupt ways compared to Raghav’s strength of character, grit and will-power. He leaves Raghav’s office without telling him anything and makes a plan instead to reunite Aarti and Raghav.

He achieves his plan successfully by getting into bed with two call girls the moment Aarti is about to step into his room to wish him on the day of his birthday as she had planned to surprise him but Gopal had already known of her plan and had instead formed his counter-plan. Aarti is shocked at the spectacle of Gopal in bed with two naked girls. She rushes out and is inconsolable. Thereafter they never talk again.

Aarti and Raghav are married soon in the same hotel where Gopal rents a room and he watches their marriage ceremony from the balcony of his room in tears.

Thus the novel comes to its end and Raghav is shown to step into politics, contesting instead of MLA Shukla which again is something that Gopal had secretly refused to get into so that Raghav might be able to become a politician and bring a positive change in society.

The novel concludes with the author himself telling Gopal that he is “a good man”.

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author avatar Tranquilpen
10th Dec 2011 (#)

Great review of the book, thank you.

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author avatar Buzz
11th Dec 2011 (#)

Wow, what a very well-writtten review, ogee. Right on.

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author avatar Phuntsok lhamo
17th Jan 2013 (#)

i reli like da story, n da endin ws soo sad, keep writin interestin story chetan ji...

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