Chetan Bhagat


Coming down to questioning even their taste in Literature; teachers of Delhi University attack the pro-Bhagat CBCS committee.

In April this year, the renowned Indian author Chetan Bhagat had announced on Twitter the inclusion of his novel ‘Five Point Someone’ in the Literature curriculum of the University of Delhi (DU).

Source: Amazon
Source: Amazon

The introduction of the Choice Based Credit System (CBCS) has been the harbinger of quite a few elements of change in both the structure as well as the curriculum of the varsity. Apart from the novel, the concerned committee had also recommended making Facebook post writing a part of a course on “academic writing” (as reported to the NEWS18). “It was felt that there is arbitrariness in framing and modification of the syllabus. It has also come to light that the department has been in practice of favouring some authors and publishers, even by going out of the way of normal practice and justification,” as were one of the details recorded in the meeting.

While the esteemed University has put it on hold, sources suggest that it might be taken up in the upcoming academic session. Moreover, a review committee has been formed to look into the matter. This move garnered considerable backlash from Literature enthusiasts.

“The committee has been formed to look into procedural lapses in syllabi design and modification, who were the members of the CBCS committee, was there sufficient representation from colleges, were all members informed about the modification and their approval sought”, as reported to the PRESS TRUST OF INDIA.

While there have been other changes put forward by the CBCS in the recent past; a lot of them entertained by the University; this move with its backlash from within the fold has already garnered humungous attention and might as well be a move against the policies of the CBCS.


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Shrija Ganguly

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It has been speculated that Chetan Bhagat’s bestselling book, ‘Five Point Someone’ has been included in the DU syllabus for those students who choose English as their Generic Elective in their 3rd semester, which will commence in July 2017. The book will be taught as a part of the ‘popular fiction’ paper under the Choice Based Credit System.

The proposed modified syllabus has been forwarded to the English department heads of all DU colleges for feedback. Recommendations will then be submitted to the Academic Council and Executive Council for approval. If this proposal is approved, by July, students with English as their Generic Elective will be able to study J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express, and Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women along with Five Point Someone by Chetan Bhagat. This course will only be available to Honours and Programme students in their second year, hence students from any stream who want to choose English as their elective subject will be able to study this paper. However, students pursuing English Honours will not be offered this paper and will continue studying Shakespeare, Fitzgerald, and other such books that, in Chetan Bhagat’s words, ‘Elitistaan’ approves of.

The reaction towards Chetan Bhagat’s inclusion in DU’s English syllabus has been mixed across the student community. However, most of the students and faculty members feel that the inclusion of Bhagat’s book with the likes of Louisa May Alcott, Agatha Christie, and J.K. Rowling is rather bizarre. Chetan Bhagat reacted to this move on Twitter and said: “Am honoured DU added my book to their course. Literature is about being open minded and reading the classics as well as the contemporary”. He then went on to comment on the criticism this move has received by stating, “To me, good literature is writing that actually touches people, whether in the past or now. It isn’t something an Elitist Club decides”.


Feature Image Credits: Sadda Haq

Joyee Bhattacharya
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While my friends were making plans to see Salman Khan’s latest blockbuster, I was all set with my coffee mug to step into Chetan Bhagat’s world. “What Young India Wants”, Bhagat’s first non-fiction novel, caught my attention every time I passed the Vishvidyalaya metro station book shop. The catchy title and the flashy cover suggested that the book was sure to unlock the secrets of our hopes, desires, dreams and ambitions. So I bought it and promptly sat down to read it.

It started with his life journey, detailing his experiences as an engineer and an investment banker. It was all quite boring as I was already well aware of his achievements he keeps boasting about. He then talks about society at large. He also talks about the Bhopal Gas Tragedy, the German bakery blast, the Airline crisis, various scams like CWG, 2G, IPL, terrorism and other national issues. He tries to give solutions. Some are sensible while others are best read and forgotten. He says things like “Our laws need to be amended for corporate disasters” and that “politician-industrialist socialising should not be encouraged”. He is right, of course, but the how is conveniently missing. We all know that these problems exist and Chetan makes next to no effort to challenge or enhance existing social consensus.

I continued reading it in the hope, that he will give a solution to the problems but none came. The writer expresses his views about today’s youth, their outlook, aspirations and their needs. He is of the opinion that the youth dream only about a good job and a good partner.  “Spark” is quite a motivational chapter. He lays emphasis on the importance of English language (though his own English shows little signs of improving). Most of the book consisted of extracts from newspapers.

Though the back cover of the book made a lot of promises about answering questions, the book itself failed to live up to my expectations. However the book can be appreciated for it’s optimism and positivity.


Sakshi Gupta
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