I have heard and seen about Raghuvir Chaudhary as he is one of the prestigious Gujarati writers. However I have read many articles of him in news papers but I taste him before a week when I have read his novella “Lagni”
Lagni has well organized plot as its theme is located in the rural life of Gujarati people. Moreover he has used the North-Gujarati dialect in each line which I like most as it has taught me many vernacular words of my region North-Gujarat. He has also used many proverbs, quotations of Gujarati language that has helped me a lot to enhance my Gujarati vocabulary as well as concept of that particular language. But the real taste that I have got from this story is its characters which also involve my name Lalji. The other characters in this novella are Reva, Virji, Mukhi, Savji etc. However it has no sub-plot, this novella has mainly to themes: friendship and love. So the novella deals with this to issues concentrating on the protagonist Lalji.
Some incidents are really very heart touching in this novella as in the beginning of the novella Lalji completes the cremation process of his friend Savji, who is dead. For this process he has showed his strength as a protagonist by revolting the Mukhi for which he has to suffer a lot.
In other incident we find Lalji very miserable as he has to live in farm in spite of having home in village. He does so because his own elder brother is suspicious about the relation of Lalji and his bhabhi. I feel here shocked by this negative thinking of his elder brother as he blames this pious relation of Bhabhi and Devar which is like mother and son.
Then the love among Lalji, his buffalo and his dog is also heart beating.
Then the true friendship between Lalji and Virji is the crucial one theme in this story. As in one incident Mukhi tries to send both of them into jail. At that time Virji threats Mukhi for blaming his friend Lalji as a thief and he swears to kill Mukhi. So Lalji tries to calm down Virji and stops him by killing Mukhi. But as a friend Virji can not bear his friend insult and tries to kill Mukhi after few days. At that time Lalji saves Mukhi from death in the hands of Virji. It shows Lalji’s virtues even for enemy. Both the friends are ready to do anything for each other. For instant, in the end Virji runs away with Lalji on his shoulder which is one of the tragic incidents of this novella. Then in the hospital Virji threats doctors to kill them if they will not save his friend from poison. He tries to talk with unconscious Lalji and says him that I will also die if he will die. This are quite heart thumping examples of friendship. So Virji is generous by heart in spite of being poor by money. The other land mark of this novella is love between Reva and Lalji. Lalji likes her by first sight and fall in love with her. He decided to marry only and only Reva that’s why he tries to suicide in the end when he finds that he has lost Reva. Reva is also strong beloved who is ready to leave even his own parents for his love. She finds all the qualities of husband in Lalji as she loves him and revolts against her family. She indirectly proposes Lalji to run away with her if her family does not allow them to marry. Lalji’s bhabhi is also trustworthy towards him as she suggests him that his own husband is not willing any good of him. She also supports Lalji to marry with Reva and is ready to help him for any cost even to give ‘satta’ to him. It has also interwoven the issues of society like Satta-system.
So this novella is fantastic one in all its aspects it may be language, plot, characters, themes, etc.