Next to the heros of the Puranas, no name is more familiar to Indians than that of Chanakya (4th century BCE) or as he is otherwise known, Kautilya or Visnugupta. Throughout the whole of India, nitis or wise sayings attributed to him, are even now taught to students. The very fact that this universal adoration is paid to his memory, shows that Kautilya was in his own days regarded as a master, whose worldly wisdom and foresight gained for him the veneration of his comtemporaries.
This book is a Hindi Translation and commentary on aphorisms of Chanakya by Sri Ramavatar Vidyabhaskar. There are 571 aphorisms in six chapters.
Chanakya begins the text with a prayer to Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth. Usually Sanskrit texts begin with "Mangalacharanam" - a prayer to Guru, Ganesa or ones Ishta Devata for the auspicious completion of the book. We can see that Chanakya does not conform to this tradition. The first sutra, is perhaps, an explanation why he directed his prayer to Lakshmi. It says, "Wealth is the root cause of Dharma (Righteousness). The last sutra says, "Control of senses is the cause for success in all matters". Thus, through his aphorisms, Chanakya teaches that a country can progress only imbibing values such as righteousness and self-control and by acquisition of wealth through good governance.