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Why This Film on Deendayal Upadhyaya is Relevant in Bengal Ahead of 2021 Polls

Sources say Bhagwat wants to set up at least one shakha (daily congregation) in each of the 341 Blocks in West Bengal. (File photo)

Sources say Bhagwat wants to set up at least one shakha (daily congregation) in each of the 341 Blocks in West Bengal. (File photo)

After decades, today this 73-year-old man, Mahavir Prasad, a film producer, and music composer is all set to release his much-awaited biopic on Deendayal Upadhyaya on September 25.

After being inspired by Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya’s ideology – in the early 60s, a youth used to smear walls of Lucknow with saffron flags and lamps printed on it- the official flag of Bharatiya Jana Sangh (BJS).

During the Congress rule in those years holding the Jana Sangh’s ‘Bhagwa Dhwaj’ required a lot of courage due to political and ideological differences. Despite all odds, with determination towards the Sangh Parivar, this young boy never missed a chance to attend speeches of Deendayal Upadhyay, Jana Sangh founder- Syama Prasad Mukherjee in Uttar Pradesh’s Lucknow.

Years passed, in college the young boy developed an interest in theatre and music, simultaneously, becoming an ardent supporter of Sangh’s ideology. After decades, today this 73-year-old man, Mahavir Prasad, a film producer and music composer is all set to release his much-awaited biopic on Deendayal Upadhyaya on September 25.

The movie begins with a man’s body lying on a railway track, surrounded by few men in front of a station named ‘Mughalsarai Junction’. The shot jumps to a newspaper vendor (holding a bunch of a national daily) screaming - ‘Patri Ke Kinare Mili Laash... Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya Paye Gaye Mritya (Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya found dead near a railway track).

As per information, the movie will be first screened in the national capital- in Rashtrapati Bhavan and BJP headquarters at Deendayal Upadhyay Marg.

“It was my dream to make a biopic on Deendayal Upadhyaya ji and I am happy to announce that on September 25, we are going to screen ‘Mughalsarai Junction’ in Delhi. The place is yet to be finalised but I have requested BJP president JP Nadda ji to help us in its screening at Rashtrapati Bhavan or at the BJP headquarters,” Mahavir Prasad told News18.com.

Talking about the inspiration behind the film, Prasad added, “My father and mother were associated with the Sangh. During my teenage, I was lucky to attend sessions of Deendayal Upadhyaya on ‘antyodaya’. I was inspired by his thoughts and started working for the body. There was a house in Lucknow which is known as Bharati Bhawan and in the 60s, the Jan Sangh flags were stored there. I used to put those saffron flags with lamps printed on the streets of Lucknow. That work used to give me immense satisfaction. Today I am honoured to produce ‘Mughalsarai Junction’ as my tribute to Deendayal Upadhyaya ji.”

Mughalsarai Junction will also be released in West Bengal, on which, Prasad said, “screening of my biopic in Bengal is important for us as something is not going well in Bengal as our ‘karyakartas’ are facing problems. Through this biopic, I would like to boost the morale of our ‘karyakartas’ and also expecting a good response from the youths who are not associated with us. At the end of this month I will be in Kolkata to finalise the place of its screening and I will ensure that more numbers of people in Bengal will watch it.”

The next destination for the release is said to be Tamil Nadu. Interestingly, both West Bengal and Tamil Nadu are going to witness their state polls in 2021.

“Biopic on Deendayal Upadhyaya is certainly a game plan of right-wing groups to politicise the matter. I have no issue with the biopic, he is certainly an inspiration for many but I think the timing and place of its screening is questionable. I think it is a political strategy of RSS and the BJP to woo the youths ahead of polls in Bengal and Tamil Nadu,” Author and political expert Kapil Thakur said.

Further expressing his wish to produce a biopic on Syama Prasad Mukherjee, Prasad added that he is planning to do his research from Mukherjee’s birthplace- Kolkata.

Although extensive social work by the Sangh karyakartas and its affiliates are nothing new in Bengal but despite being the home state of Jan Sangh ideologue, RSS was hardly a force in the state for decades. The scenario changed in 2014 as the incumbent Prime Minister Narendra Modi ascended to power while the Sangh too suddenly emerged a force to reckon with in the state.

Reportedly, RSS has set a target of opening one shakha at each gram panchayat of West Bengal by 2021, a target that many connect it with the upcoming assembly polls in the state.

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