‘Chanakya Chant’ by Ashwin Sanghi – A Chanakya Is Born in Today’s World

A very well conceptualised and written story by Ashwin Sanghi. As is usually the case with Ashwin Sanghi, this book also narrates two stories, one of the famous ‘Chanakya’ and his disciple ‘Chandragupta Maurya’ and another story of present day Chanakya, Gangasagar Mishra and his protégé Chandini.

The story is about a poor Brahmin boy Ganga Sagar and his razor-sharp mind in economics, history and politics. He takes keen interest in Indian politics and decides to be the king maker, he establishes a political party of his own in Uttar Pradesh and promotes a local goon, Ikram, to become the mayor of the city Kanpur and then helps him become powerful at the state level. Meanwhile, he decides to open a school for the slum population and finds a girl student Chandini, who is sharp and has the potential to be a leader. He decides to take her under his patronage, sponsors all her foreign education and brings her into the world of politics, only to make her so strong politically that she becomes Prime Minister of India one day.

The story depicts how this one guy meddles with everyone’s life to ensure his work is done, he doesn’t see a harm in harming others as long as his own motives are fulfilled. He follows the footsteps of Chanakya and his preachings. Story depicts the current state of Indian Politics which is so full of people who are not very well-educated, mafia ruling the parties, money laundering, scams, frauds, murders everything happens openly to ensure people in power remain in power. Story depicts how some people who have power basically not just run the parties but entire nation and happenings, how a minister gets kicked out, how planes can be hijacked, how easily people can be cheated.

Chanakya was a Brahmin, son of Chanak, who had to run for his own life, when King Dhanananda decided to behead his father and send out to warrant to kill him as well. While running for his life, he goes onto Takshashila (the biggest university of its time) to study political science and becomes a very powerful mastermind behind uniting Bharat under the empire of Chandragupta Maurya. Chanakya is known to be the author of ‘Arthshastra’, the science of money of the ancient Hindu.

The story is very well written, with a chapter on current happenings and the story of Chandini and Gangasagar while another chapter takes the reader 2300 years back in the world of kings, Brahmins and conspiracies. A well laid out plot, which keeps one guessing at times, which amuses you, thrills you but never once bores you. It is a good one-time read…