Once in a while you come across a book that forces you to think, to imagine the impact if the fictional events that are depicted in the novel were to occur in real life. RIP by Mukul Deva was one such book. In tandem with the present scenario of the Indian political system which is diseased with corrupted and dishonest politicians, this book succeeds to touch a nerve, a very raw nerve that is.
The book starts with the K-team code-named as RIP (Resurgent Indian Patriots) on a mission to kill corrupt politicians who have been looting the country with the endless scams. Their purpose is to warn the government to take action against the corrupt politicians and have them brought to justice. They caution the men and women in power to straighten their act or else more dead bodies would start rolling. But as expected, politicians just dilly-dally over RIP and blame each other. Of course all of them are aware that if one corrupt person goes down, he will blow the cover of many other corrupt politicians. But when the count of dead politicians starts increasing, the government is forced to act.
Leading the K-team is Colonel Krishna Athawale, an honest and a sincere man who is hell bent on freeing India from the clutches of greedy politicians. Assisting him on this dangerous mission are men who served under him in the army. Krishna Athawale’s character reminded me of Alex Cross from the James Patterson series. Like Alex Cross, Athawale is an honest brave man, loyal to his buddies and at the same time a doting, loving parent. And like Cross, his love life is perennially doomed.
The story is simple but yet the narration keeps the reader engrossed and riveted. Often Athawale himself has doubts on the path that the K-team treads. ‘An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind’, quoted Mahatma Gandhi and murdering politicians to bring justice somehow doesn’t seem the right route for Athawale. But someone has to take things into hand and the K-team can’t sit helplessly when the greedy politicians go scot free.
Although the author has put a disclaimer that the book is entirely a fictional work, the characters in the book have been obviously inspired from real life. For example, the activist Hazarika’s character who leads the anti-corruption movement in the book is evidently modeled after Anna Hazare. Or the ruling party NDA’s President Shelia Kaul and her son Ranvijay’s character remind you of Sonia Gandhi and Rahul. Such characters “inspired” from real life personalities did bring a smile on my lips.
The book is filled with edge-of-the-seat suspense as the vigilante team of RIP goes on a murder spree of corrupt politicians sending the remaining alive running for cover. The element of romance which gets introduced somewhere in the mid of the book does tend to digress from the story, but at the end of it everything seems to gel in the main story.
And finally, one of my New Year resolution is to pick a word that I have never heard before from each new book that I read, part of my ‘vocabulary widening’ exercise. J
So here’s the new word-ululation.
Sounds like something my 10-month old daughter would utter from her mouthJ
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