A look back at our Constitution: Shyam Benegal’s ‘Samvidhaan’

The Indian Constitution is the largest written constitutional document in the world. It took two and half years to frame it completely. Having born way after Independence,  the Youth of this country can only imagine what could have happened during the meetings of the Constituent Assembly or read in the history books about it.

I was watching the History TV 18 Channel on TV and wondered why couldn’t we in India make some show which enlightens the youth about the rich heritage and struggles for freedom of this nation, which seems to have thrown in the dustbin, as India grows younger.

Then one day while watching the Speech of our PM (then PM designate) Sh. Narendra Modiji on Rajya Sabha TV , I watched the 2nd episode of the mini TV series by Shyam Benegal on India’s Constitution, titled as ‘Samvidhaan’ which is the Hindi translation of the word ‘Constitution’.

The TV series features the series of events which took place during the formulation and enactment of the Constitution of the largest democracy of the world.

The script has been written brilliantly taking care of the use of words by the people in the coveted assembly according to their region of origin.

Shyam Benegal’s experience and artistry is reflected in the way he has chosen and directed actors for their respective roles. You would sometime feel that you were watching a documentary and not a mere enactment. For example, Rajendra Gupta as President Dr. Rajendra Prasad, Dilip Tahlani as Pt. Nehru, Paresh Ganatra as K. T . Shah,Ila Arun as Hansa Mehta, and others look perfect in their respective roles, be it their make up, dialogue delivery or accent.

Cast and crew of Samvidhaan

Swara Bhaskar’s anchoring adds to the attractiveness of this story styled narrative of the making of the constitution of India. The article by article discussion, the politics of the country at that time, the social and communal issues which were raised during the discussion, the separation of Pakistan and Gandhi-Jinnah relations have been portrayed beautifully. Although some might argue about the story line but Benegal and his team has taken care of each and every short story they encapsulated in the series. All the dialogues have been created from recorded facts and speeches and accounts from the biographies of various leaders.

The first show aired on 2nd March 2014, Sunday when the nation was hearing the opening bell of the 2014 general elections and in these extravagant elections this fantastic piece of creation went unnoticed.

President of India felicitated the actors in a ceremony on 20th February which was coincidentally the penultimate day of the 15th Lok Sabha.

The series couldn’t be shot in the Central Hall of Parliament as it would have to be re shaped, so a replica of the Central Hall (as it would have looked in that era) was created in the Film Studio at Mumbai and the series was shot there.

I urge people from all walks of life to watch this TV series at least once and I am sure you would be proud of our Constitution and its rich history.

These episodes are now available on RajyaSabha TV’s YouTube channel.

Here are all the 10 episodes of the series.

Quote

Election aya! Election aya!

Election Aya! Election Aya!

waadon ke pulinde laya!

humko isne khub bharmaya

khel kisika samajh na aya!

 

yun to ye sakht daur garmi ka hai

lekin yaha to mela besharmi ka hai

Suraj ko dekh Neta bhi aankh dikhaya

Election aya! Election Aya!

 

is kalyug mein zuban hi shastra hai

man maila tan sundar vastra hain

Shikaari ne phir se apna jaal bichaya

kyunki Election Aya! Election Aya!

 

deshbhakt tum sambhal ke rehna

matri bhakt tum sambhal ke rehna

saapon ne phir zeher hai dikhaya

2014 me Election aya! Election Aya!

Aside

Kingship knows no Kinship

With an unprecedented chain of events, involving the barter of kins from one party to another, these General Elections have turned up to promote ‘Mahabharat’.

While Namonarayan Meena, former cabinet minister in UPA 2, fights against his real brother, Harishchandra Meena in Dausa(Rajasthan), Congress party thinks it has scored big with former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s niece, Karuna Shukla. She is running for the Lok Sabha membership from Madhya Pradesh. We all know what Uddhav and Raj Thackrey have been upto since the formation of the MNS in 2006.

In the chain of events when brothers are fighting against each other, PM Manmohan Singh’s half brother, Daljeet Singh Kohli mysteriously joins the BJP.

These series of events remind me of the epic tale of Mahabharat, and the phrase ‘Kingship knows no Kinship’.

Kingship-knows-no-kinship

Extravagant Elections! India votes!

The world’s largest democracy is put to test as it needs to elect a government for itself which can take her to the path of development and glory which she ought to be on.

The showbiz, the marketing, the advertisements, the speech, the rallies, the roadshows. Too much to look forward these elections as this time it is not just a two way fight.

With an eye on the ‘neo middle class’ people, Aam Aadmi Party has jumped into the General Elections. As it’s National Convener highlights again and again that ‘removing’ corruption is their primary target, AAP has provided the progressive people of India a third ‘promising’ option.

With BJP’s Namo Namo call, they hope they can ride on the wave and get clear majority in the lower house, which this nation hasn’t seen since the 1984 general elections when late Pm Rajiv Gandhi won 416 seats for INC riding on the sympathy wave after Indira Gandhi’s assasination.

INC on the other hand has been pushed against the wall. They rely on Rahul Gandhi’s speeches which are thought to be ‘youthful’. With Manmohan Singh retiring, he could be the scapegoat for taking the blame of all the scams in the UPA regime. The only thing INC can do to get votes is by propagating the ‘secular’ word.

The talks about polity is over, let’s talk about the other side of these general elections, the MONEY been flown like water.

BJP on one hand is using Technology like 3D holograph to reach out more and more people, INC has not changed it’s conventional way of reaching the masses.

Massive budgets are allocated for marketing and advertisements. Whether it be ‘Bhaarat Nirman’ or ‘Abki baar Modi Sarkar’, political establishments are trying to lure voters with ‘chunavi lollipops’.

But where does this much money come from? The Election Commission keeps a check on the election budgets of parties but still there are cases when Black money is involved.

With parties turning down this claim, there is enough room for doubt. As India have progressed into the 21st century, the 67 year old young nation has developed a sense of what is politically correct or incorrect.

Therefore, I leave it up to the voters’ discretion that use of black money bothers him or not. After all these parties will only run our economy after they get elected.

But don”t make it an excuse to not to vote. It is a hearty appeal to people of India especially the youth to go out and vote.

Because your vote is NOT your right as publicized by the ‘Netas’ but your duty, your obligation towards the future generation of this nation who is getting younger as it grows old.

Jai Hind. Jai Maa Bharati.

P.S. these are neutral views of the author and are not motivated by any political force. Don’t hurl abuses or use derogatory language in comments. thank you.