I usually do a video when talking about a book that I really like. It isn’t incorrect to assume I am speechless after reading ‘Raag Darbari’ (and hence no video 😊)
The book was patiently waiting for its turn on my bookshelf. I took it out because I wanted to read something ‘light’. I had two apprehensions when I started reading it,
- I don’t read fiction
- I don’t remember why I purchased this book
A few pages later, I came to know what a literary masterpiece of fiction actually looks like. I looked up the author Shrilal Shukla and remembered reading him in my school curriculum. High chances why I must have bought this book.
Raag Darbari is everything a satire should be. No sugarcoating. No fakery. A crystal clear mirror to the society reminding us who we have always been. Our culture and our mindset, the ingrained corruption, casteism, politics, the entire system is intelligibly portrayed. The novel came out in 1968 and yet everything about ‘Shivpalganj’ stands perfectly true even today. Chances are, a good 100-150 kms from every Indian city, there exists a Shivpalganj. And Raag Darbari’s characters are all alive and breathing.
Now when I really, really like a book and I am done reading it, I read ABOUT the book. Upon some googling, I came across a clip of Ravish Kumar from 2018 talking about the 50 years of Raag Darbari. Ravish said such a beautiful line about the book that I don’t think I need to write anything after that,
राग दरबारी आपने नहीं पढ़ी होगी तो भी मैं दावा कर सकता हूँ के आपने राग दरबारी पढ़ी है. क्योंकि आप भारतीय व्यवस्था के किसी भी अंग के करीब जाएँगे, राग दरबारी का ही अनुभव करते हुए लौटेंगे.