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What Young India Wants: Selected NonFiction Paperback – December 10, 2014
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From the Publisher
In Conversation with Chetan Bhagat
How Can We Change?
Yes, honesty pays but only if all of society is honest. If only you are honest, but everyone else is not, you will suffer. This is the bottleneck obstructing change in India today. We all want to be honest, but we don’t want to be the only one honest, for then we will suffer. This paradox prevents change.
For example, suppose that a crowd of people is waiting for a bus at a stop. When the bus arrives, everybody pushes and shoves to get in. It makes life difficult for everyone. The solution to this daily misery would be everyone queueing up to get in. However, everyone needs to come on board with the queuing system. If you are the only one queuing up, while the others continue to rush in, you will be left behind.
Thus, transformation will come about only if everyone decides to change together. A majority of Indians have to accept what we do is wrong and be ready to change for a better future.
Society needs to reset and inculcate good values. Right now, we don’t even have a clear set of Indian values. We need to create them. How will all this happen and that too at the same time? Well, this is where leaders come in.
A leader is a human being who can reach a large part of the population. If the leader is charismatic and influential, they can create a lot of positive change in people’s thinking. If we are lucky enough to have good leaders at the top, change will happen quickly. Unfortunately, we don’t. Given how divided India is, how corruption is accepted and how we lack good values, it is impossible for us to choose a good leader at this point.
Deep down we are all sceptical and ashamed of ourselves. Thus, anyone who even tries to change India for the better is seen with cynical eyes. We know we are all tarnished, so we doubt everyone else too. It is a sad situation, where we need a leader but cannot really trust anyone.
Anti-corruption protestors are often doubted. I can bet some people reading this will be asking— what is Chetan’s agenda? What is he trying to achieve? Who is he trying to please? What does he want? In fact, a leader would be left explaining himself or herself rather than doing any work.
In this chaos, I feel there is a role for artists. What we lack in leaders can be made up to a certain extent by art and artists. Movies, books, music—popular art forms can inject people with modern messages and a new set of Indian values. As a writer with reach, I can at least attempt to present an alternative way of thinking. Sure, I have no authority as a leader or as much power as an official head. Yet, I have some qualities today what even a senior politician may not have. I have the benefit of being neutral. I am not aligned to any political party, therefore, the cynicism is also reduced.
I also have no political aspirations in the foreseeable future, so that reduces doubt about my selfish interests. I make enough money as a motivational speaker and I am not dependant on political patronage. This credibility is priceless in today’s times. That, combined with reach, can make a significant impact on public opinion. And that is where, I think, my writings can be most influential.
What Young India Wants
While this book covers a wide range of topics, there are some guidelines or common themes I follow. I either comment on the system or on society. The system changes with better policies. Society changes with better values. I have a bias towards youth-based issues, as most of India is young. Corruption, education, secularism are the topics I focus on the most. And even though some people may find it preposterous, I often propose solutions in my writings. That is because if I offer no solutions, then all I am doing is ranting. We must always suggest a way out, however simplistic it may be. It is a more positive attitude towards life.
I believe India has major problems. However, I also believe they can be fixed.
- Publisher : Rupa Publications India; 2nd ed. edition (December 10, 2014)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 208 pages
- ISBN-10 : 812913554X
- ISBN-13 : 978-8129135544
- Item Weight : 7.4 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.1 x 0.52 x 7.75 inches
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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Chetan had brought in the complete thought process, and modalities, to revive lycherous system of this country, and ensure paving for young India, which is in majority today....But this thought process does exists, among young India, with out any workable solution. Anna is screaming with his team, Khairnar also wanted in the same way, just to name a few. How to make it happen...since i did not read the book completely, may bear a solution in later part. How an young man after schooling can decide, that he wanted to be a leader, by virtue of his education, instead of doctor or ias or engineer. To be a leader, at college level, one need to be a student union leader. I am really not aware about academic level of students union leaders, in IIT and IIM, but at every college, across the country, most of them are last benchers. Ultimately, they rope in town based politicians cadre, by sacrificing their once in a life time opportunity of getting higher studies...It is good to dream, but India need some one to act, execute and reform. My misfortune, I also can not be one, since need to look after my job, spouse, daughter and other important things, than India...
Keep reading and good luck...
What I got from this interesting little book is that- the author wants young India to be the change that they want to see rather than merely sitting and hoping for change to take place. It is impertinent that the youth actively engages in the issues involving the nation if they want the nation to grow and develop.
The struggle is hard and constant, however rewarding.
And here I give 3 stars because of good thoughts.
Applied many of his thoughts in a speech I recently made at a youth conference in Delhi
Top reviews from other countries
This guy has great writing and analytical skills no doubt, he is also patriotic & feels genuinely. Although he is not a spiritual prodigal or a great wise soul in the sense of our spiritual legacy & heights our philosophers have traversed all thru the ages, but as a able & insightful intellectual, he has many creative ideas and they often shine in his narratives & envisioning's out of his emanations, including this one.
Ansonsten zeigt es auch, dass die Kluft zwischen Arm und Reich noch erschreckend größer geworden ist, was ich kaum fassen konnte. Aber da sich am Erziehungssystem und den -inhalten offenbar nichts geändert hat und die Korruption wesentlich größer als kleiner geworden is - wen wundert das.
Für mich als sehr an Indien Interesessierte ein wahrer Schatz, den es bisher leider nur auf Englisch gibt. Ich wünschte, mehr junge Leute hier könnten es lesen, denn es gibt etliche Parallelen zwischen der indischen und der hiesigen Jugend, die nicht immer beruhigend sind. Aber es ist hoffnungsvoll. Cheetan Bhagat kann Probleme auf unglaublich eindrucksvolle, wenn auch manchmal vereinfachende Art, nahebringen.
Sehr sehr empfehlenswert!!