BOOK- THE BANKSTER
AUTHOR – RAVI SUBRAMANIAN
PUBLISHED BY – RUPA PUBLICATIONS
GENRE – FICTION
PRICE – Rs.250
MY RATING – 4 on a scale of 5.
Whenever there is crime there is a tension brewing around it but it’s only the calmness of the criminal which makes him do the crime. THE BANKSTER, in it’s full might is a crime suspense novel. RAVI SUBRAMANIAN has done a remarkable job this time again after his bestseller novel THE INCREDIBLE BANKER.
The banking world is a lure to the job seekers, a shrine of trust for some and for people like Vikram, Nikhil, Zinaida, Tanuja, Abhishek alias Joseph Braganja alias Mir Zawari alias Suresh Ramamurthy and their list can go on. The bank in question here is the Greater Boston Global Bank( GB2).
In these times of economic slowdown a lot is being said and written about the banking industry. This book can be a wise pick for a good tea-time read. The story revolves around people, who belong to different walks of life. Krishna Menon is an elderly man,who owns a three-acre plantation in Kerala and runs a resort there. He lost his only son in a nuclear calamity in Russia and that is why he was trying his best to save the people from another nuclear tragedy,this time in Kerala and the Trikakulum Nuclear Power Plant is the plant in question. Krishna knew that any disaster here can prove fatal and claim thousands of innocent lives. What egged him on to continue a protest against the plant was his love for his dead son. Any protest needs power. Krishna’s protest met the power of Jayakumar, a social worker and the founder of CNRI (Conservation of Natural Resources through Innovative use of Technology) .
Another chapter unfolds in Angola, where a CIA agent, Joseph Braganza is busy exchanging weapons for blood diamonds. He has a sharp head over his impressive stature and gets his work done no matter what comes his way. This man’s dedication is such that he can throw a naked girl out of his room just to receive a call that don’t want to receive infront of her.
The Greater Boston Global Bank (GB2), is the place that churns out the pivotal elements of the story and becomes the pillar behind the money laundering scam which is the central theme of this novel. Vikram Behl, the retail-banking head of GB2 is in his way a mastermind, a game-planner who tries to find his benefits in everything that happens around him. He runs behind numbers and success almost blindly and has an apt accomplice in Tanuja, the HR head of the company. The duo plans their way through problems and though married, they sinfully reap physical pleasures off each other. Vikram plays with Guneet, his colleague, to get Nikhil, Guneet’s team worker on his board. He plays it so clean that no one can point a finger at him. Nikhil joins the Bandra branch of the bank, meets the manager Anand there and the two with Vikram’s blessings take that branch from a under-performer to a remarkable achiever. Harshita Lele, an efficient employee of the bank is having a serious competition with a newcomer Zinaida Gomes ( the hot Relationship Manager, who is an eye candy for the male employees who treats their eyes seeing her, a reference by Vikram ) who suddenly gives the bank a meteoric rise with her beginner’s luck. She brings in a company named Asia Logistics, which gives the bank a huge profit. Raymond is another man who is sincere and loyal to his job. A close friend of Harshita, he comes to know about the new company and starts having a bad feeling about the matter. He gets all worked up to find the details of the company that is suddenly changing the face of the Bandra branch.
Vienna witnesses the death of two tourists, who hailed from India, Harshita and Siddharth Lele. The Vienna police starts investigating the case. Back in India, this news shatters the people here, who had already lost a cashier few days back in an accident. Even when everyone was trying to overcome the shock, Vikram planned his “girl” Zinaida should be promoted to Harshita’s position. In the coming days, Raymond died, apparently a suicide. Their friend, Karan Punjabi, an employee of The Times Of India jumps in to solve the case of the unnatural deaths occurring in GB2 with the help of the bank’s CEO Indrani. He and his girlfriend Kavya starts working on this secret case, informing noone. He had just thirty-six hours at his disposal and the entire nation at stake. During the investigation they discover Asia logistics was a fraud account and gradually they burst the scam. The people involved are doomed for life.Tanuja, the youngest daughter of Jayakumar jumps to death. Jayakumar is killed by Krishna for being an arms lobbyist and having access to dirty money. Vikram loses his reputation and now feeds on his wife’s earnings. Nikhil, Anand, Zinaida are also left nowhere. Indrani on the other hand was hailed for her honesty. GB2 gets busy saving it’s face.
HOW they solved it, WHAT actually happened, is for you to read and find out. The story is projected from multiple angles and different lights. When a story revolves around multiple characters it becomes difficult to hold the interest of the reader but the author does it just fine. Though at places I felt the drama was a bit more but nevertheless Mr.Subramanian does an impeccable job bringing out the bad side of the banking world. Who can tell us the back-end story of the banking world other than a banker himself. The author is an IIM alumnus who has spent two decades of his life there.
Grab a copy of THE BANKSTER, read it and you are welcome to re-review my review. 🙂