I'm stupid sometimes, it's a well-known fact: Chetan Bhagat | books | Hindustan Times
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I'm stupid sometimes, it's a well-known fact: Chetan Bhagat

He is Time magazine's 100 Most Influential People in the world and the author of four bestselling novels, but he attracts controversies like moth to light. At the launch of his latest novel, Revolution 2020, he talks about his books, controversies and his tendency to say stupid things.

books Updated: Oct 09, 2011 09:03 IST

Chetan Bhagat's book launch event resembled a family gathering with guests gossiping and catching up with other each other. While mothers chatted with each other, nannies were spotted taking care of babies - the unexpected audience at a literary event.

After a long wait, the much awaited book, Revolution 2020 was released by Yuvraj Singh and Shazahn Padamsee at India International Centre Annexe Lawns, in the capital.

After releasing the book, the cricketer read out a well-rehearsed speech, "Chetan is a friend, I have read his earlier works, I remember reading Three Mistakes Of My Life, it captures what sports can mean to a sportsperson in the character Ishan. In cricket we often talk about the power of the bat and how it can change the player's life. In my case too, power of the bat has changed my life. However here I'm here witnessing another power - the power of the pen. Chetan's writing shows how power of the pen can change your life, it's so strong that even without any official authority or power, the young generation listens to him."

Revolution 2020 (Rupa Publications), which is dedicated to  'The Indian student', captures the dilemmas and pressures a student goes through in the corrupt and ruthless world of competitive exams, IITs, and failures.

With the whole country in an anti-corruption mood, courtesy Anna Hazare, the book with the tagline:  Love. Corruption. Ambition, couldn't have come out at a better time.  The author of four bestselling novels says that it deals specifically with corruption in the education sector and denies that Anna movement has anything to do with it.

"Almost all my columns have been on corruption. It's my job to sense what the youth is feeling and I sensed that the youth isn't happy. Still, I was hesitant that why would the youth pick up a book on corruption, but then the Anna movement happened, and I realized  I that I was right on the right track," he said.

Recently, Bhagat, an IIT alumnus, took offence at Infosys chairman emeritus N R Narayana Murthy's comments on the quality of engineers churned out IITs and retorted that such comments should not have come from a person who runs a "body shopping" company and calls it "hi-tech."

In retrospect, he admitted being a little impulsive and denies doing it for publicity, "I've bookings for half a million copies, I don't need a controversy, if you want to create a controversy, you do it with some film star, I never knew an old gentleman like Narayana Murthy is controversy material! It's like a boring discussion between two nerds.  If someone says that 80% students from your college are bad, will you bear it? It was just a question about college loyalty, I didn't realize it would become controversial," said India's paperback king.

As the evening progressed,  the author read out a passage from the book with Shazahn Padamsee, who added Bollywood glam to the literary cum family reunion.