Teachers from several colleges around Delhi University have rejected the idea of including Chetan Bhagat’s writings into the literature syllabus saying that they did not consider them literature. This came after the DU’s department of English mooted the proposal of including Bhagat’s novels in their syllabus.
The university has for now put on hold the proposal by the English department adding that it had formed a review committee to recommend if it can be taken up in the next academic session.
The minutes of the meeting read, “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.
“It seems through the reactions which came after the proposal that all of a sudden one big change has been made in the undergraduate English course -introduction of Chetan Bhagat’s Five Point Someone in the popular fiction paper of the syllabus. National dailies did considerable reporting on the issue, Twitter was ‘shocked’ with the news and Facebook and WhatsApp were no behind with comments and counter comments on the story.”
There was also a proposal to include a course dedicated to writing Facebook posts.
Bhagat has been a very successful writer but his writing has often been dubbed as mediocre. He has also come under sharp criticism for his open support for Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his party the BJP. It’s his support for the right-wing Hindutva ideology that has made Bhagat a villain of sorts among amny of his erstwhile admirers.