Basanti by Diamond Sumsher

Basanti is a story of a girl by the same name. It is one of the finest literary works of Diamond Sumsher which depicts the story of a girl along with the accounts of the historical events during the time of Junga Bahadur Rana, the first Rana Prime Minister of Nepal.

Basanti begins with the description of two young people Jung Bahadur and Mithu caught up in a shade to save them from the rain. They are attracted to each other and before leaving promises to meet again. However, the fate had something else in store for them. They happen to meet again at the girl’s house where they find out that they are cousins, however, during that period, cousins were the first eligible candidates when it came to marriage. The problem was that the girl Mithu was already married to the man’s best friend Dambar Bahadur. The events that follows describes how the simple village girl Mithu changes herself into Kajini (title given to the wife of member of Royal council) Basanti.

Basanti is a very beautiful girl whose life changes faster than anything else and who is constantly getting in and out of domestic troubles and hurdles that almost cost her life. It is a tragic story of a girl who had everything that she ever dreamt of, rich and loving husband, wealthy lifestyle, servants to order around but due to the cowardice of her husband and misunderstanding between the husband and wife she loses everything.

Two men constantly compete among them to get the love of the lady, the turn of the events in the Royal palace as well as in the life of Basanti is wonderfully described in the novel. How far a person crazy in love with someone would go for them is also explained in the story through the character of Dambar Bahadur and Gagansingh, Basanti‘s ex and present husbands. It also expresses how a misunderstanding between two people could completely ruin their lives.

Basanti is a wonderful novel about love and relationships, hatred and jealously, fraud and cheating. It deals with the psychological aspect of human life and also the uncertainty of the human life. Sumsher’s way of storytelling is beautiful as always and his novel is mixed with human emotions as well as historical accounts. Hence, Basanti is a must read as it also presents the background of the historical event of Kot also known as Kot Parva in Nepali.