The Greatness of Chanakya, India's One and Only True Leader

By Anuj Chugh

I read 'Chanakya's Chant', a fiction novel by Ashwin Sanghi. There was a question posed by one of the character, which i tried to answer myself - to my utmost satisfaction.

The Question - Explain whether Chanakya's treatise on political economy, the Arthashastra was his own work or whether it was simply an aggregation of previously-held views ?

My Answer - The Arthashastra was merely a compendium of all previous arthashastras. It contained all of the political philosophy prevalent at that time. However, all of it was only transmitted orally by the brahmin teachers, whom the king hired to teach their princes, the art of statecraft.

A few leafs or treatises were written before the Arthashastra, but were largely scattered. Despite being a vast compendium of all schools of thought related to subjects ranging from accountancy, justice and law to discipline, wages, division of labour and forming alliances; the author has also given his own views and at times, followed a balanced opinion when two or more views conflicted. But this does not dims the genius of Kautilya in any way. He was a practical philosopher, he conquered before he gave his testimony. He was the one who first thought out the concept of a nation, called 'Aryavartha', before india even existed.

He organized the work of Arthashastra to benefit the king, Chandragupta Maurya and also his future successors. It has been said that Chhatrapati Shivaji read the Arthashastra before conquering the moghuls and forming the maratha empire. About Kautilya's personal life, it is known that he sought revenge by setting Chandragupta Maurya on the throne of the Magadha Empire. Hence, he was a king-maker in its true sense and did not desire anything for himself even after having played an all-important role in capturing the vast kingdom by mentoring Chandragupta Maurya, without which history would have been wildly different. In truth reality itself, is the ultimate philosopher.

The ultimate waste of the world, are those dreams of humanity which will never come true. Ultimately, all of it all just boils down to the game of sharpest perception of reality, the one who has it and applies it rather than babbling about it to the world, wins it. He/She can truly make the world bend to their will.


Anuj Chugh
About the author:- A Teach For India alumnus, Anuj spent two years working in an underprivileged school in Pune, teaching 120 children from the 7th and 8th grade, developing his leadership skills. For 8 years before the fellowship, Anurag was involved in developing and debugging embedded software and hardware as part of various design teams. He is now CEO of Ergoptix Mediquip Pvt Ltd, the manufacturer of Magnifying Loupes and LED Headlamps in India. Bringing awareness of developing the practice of maintaining the correct posture by using magnification at the very inception of the doctor’s dental and medical practice. Feel free to communicate with Anuj by email or via WhatsApp message at +91-9819912872. Read more about Anuj on his personal site.


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