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April 19, 2014 Saturday     

Balraj-Sahni - Bobby Talks Cinema.com

Reading articles in film magazines penned by renowned artists themselves and listening to their personal interviews sharing a unique vision of life, indeed used to be an enriching experience, equivalent of going through some rich literature, back in time before the 80s. The views expressed in those articles/interviews had many great insights to share which could also enlighten the reader about many relevant unknown truths of life not exactly related to cinema.
Admittedly I realized this fact while going through many old journals and other valuable stuff of that golden era for a personal assignments and was literally taken back seeing the amazing quality of thoughts shared by many industry veterans like some revolutionary thinkers caring about their society around. One of those most important and must read documents happens to be the convocation speech by writer-thinker-social activist Balraj Sahni, the most natural actor of Hindi Cinema, speaking on his visit to Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi in the year 1972. And I am sure many of the friends reading it, would feel pleasantly shocked knowing the vision of this immensely talented artist, who liked to say the truth as it is without any hidden fear and therefore is considered as one of most respected names of our Hindi Film Industry unanimously.
Now looking at the 11 page long document, many might try to avoid it taking it as irrelevant or talking about something which might not be interesting enough. But for those friends, I would simply like to add that the long speech is unarguably going to change your whole outlook towards the actors of that Golden Era and perhaps your whole perception about ART, CINEMA and SOCIETY too in all possibilities. So to miss this, would be a major sin if I may call it in my humble opinion and if you still don’t feel like convinced then do read this small paragraph taken from the long text and then decide on your own.

Our little film world either offers the actor too little work, forcing him to eat his heart out in idleness; or gives him too much --so much that he gets cut off from all other currents of life. Not only does he sacrifice the pleasures of normal family life, but he also has to ignore his intellectual and spiritual needs. In the last twenty-five years I have worked in more than one hundred and twenty five films. In the same period a contemporary European or American actor would have done thirty or thirty-five. From this you can imagine what a large part of my life lies buried in strips of celluloid. A vast number of books which I should have read I have not been able to read. So many events I should have taken part in have passed me by. Sometimes I feel terribly left behind. And the frustration increases when I ask myself how many of these one hundred and twenty-five films had anything significant in them? How many have any claim to be remembered? Perhaps a few. They could be counted on the fingers of one hand. And even they have either been forgotten already or will be, quite soon.”
For online reading, the speech is available at the following official link of JNU website.
And For friends who wish to have it as a PDF format, then the same can be downloaded to read at your own convenience from the following link.
Have a good time reading & contemplating!
Tags : Balraj Sahni's remarkably inspiring speech at Jawaharlal Nehru University in 1972!, Did You Know Know Facts about Hindi Cinema at bobbytalkscinema.com, Articles on Cinema by Bobby Sing, Unknown Bollywood Trivia by Bobby Sing, Balraj Sahni at JNU in 1972
08 April 2014 / bobbysing /
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Mera Daghistaan - Bobby Talks Cinema.com

Beginning the write up I am really struggling to find the exact words to describe this amazing piece of art in the form a book by Rasul Hamzatov, the world famous poet from Russia who wrote in a lesser spoken ‘Avar’ language, the language of mountains. And to admit it openly, this is one of the most insightful, enlightening and spiritual book I have enjoyed in a long time, written by a sincere poet talking about himself, his art, his country, his people, his language and his enriching life experiences in an astonishingly unusual format.
However making you aware of the writer first, Rasul Hamzatov was the son of Russia’s well known writer-poet Hamzat Tsadasa and is widely remembered as one of the most famous, legendary creative artists loving his country and the mother language with deep love and respect. His poetic works are cherished for their honest as well as a fresh portrayal of life and its profound relationship with music, poetry, nature and literature. Awarded with the Lenin Prize for poetry, Rasul Hamzatov was also honoured with the title of People’s Poet of Daghistaan and his works have been translated in various languages all over the globe as an important part of the world literature.
Coming to the precious book MERA DAGHISTAAN, it is Hamzatov’s first form of a novel full of many introspective expressions about life, written in a pretty unfamiliar yet lovable format as I personally felt. Recommended by one of my respected professors at Punjabi University, the book kept lying on my shelf for almost six months till I found the courage to pick it up finally. The listed chapters of its contents page always discouraged me to go further as they appeared to be quite uninspiring in the first look with a strange uninteresting sequence. But as they say, I was absolutely wrong in judging the book from its cover only and was simply stunned to read the immensely useful and in-depth references right in its first few pages itself shared in a highly poetic and impressive style along with a sharp wit.
The book is indeed a very engaging and unique account of the writer’s personal life and his love for the ‘Avar’ language. It beautifully describes the people of Daghistaan, their women, the creative artists of the region, the social traditions, their thoughtful psychology and Rasul’s own passionate encounters with existence, explained with numerous fascinating parables and anecdotes, turning it into a highly recommended and exclusive read.
Yet, the reason why I am calling it a unique, never before kind of attempt lies in its extraordinary format (mentioned below), which probably remains the one of its kind only as I strongly feel.
MERA DAGHISTAAN is divided into two parts which is quite common. But what’s really uncommon is the fact that the book actually begins from its second part onwards and the whole first section is just talking about what is going to be there in its next half, introducing a completely novel and unusual pattern (I have never seen before). In other words, Hamzatov begins his book from the second part intentionally and in the entire first half he just discusses about his preparations, language, technique, style and doubts on the content presented further. And when the book actually begins in its Part Two, we get to read much more deep and informative chapters on life accompanied by many famous folklores of Daghistaan in particular.
Now expectedly many friends might find the above mentioned subject matter of the book a bit unexciting and less inviting too. But that’s exactly the mistake I made by not reading it for almost 6 months frankly and by the time I reached its last chapter, MERA DAGHISTAAN easily became one of the most absorbing and pensive books I have read in a long time full of many intelligent, liberal and meditative quotes worth sharing. For instance, here are some chosen insights from the book to inspire you further which might help you to pick it up at the earliest.
“Agar Tum Ateet Par Pistol Se Goli Chalaaoge,
To Bhavishya Tum Par Top Se Goley Barsaayega”
(If you will try to destroy the past firing with a pistol, the future would attack you more severely like shooting from a tank.)
“Astr (Weapon), Jiski Keval Ek Baar Hi Aavyashakta Padey,
Jeevanbhar Apne Saath Rakhna Parhta Hai!
Kavitaayen, Jinhen Jeevanbhar Dohraaya Jaata Hai,
Ek Baar Ji Likhi Jaati Hain!”
(A weapon which might get used only once in life, still needs to be accompanied always. But meaningful verses (poems) which are written only once are recited and remembered repeatedly in a lifetime.)
“Sansaar Ki Srishti Se Ek Sau Baras Pehle……, Kavi Ka Janam Hua”
(The poet was born…………hundred years before the whole universe was created.)
“Heerey Ki Shobha Dekhi Jaati Hai Uske Set Mein……….Insaan Ki Ghar Mein”
(As the beauty of a diamond can be best judged in a well-designed set, a person’s inner beauty can also be estimated by his home.)
“Topi Ki Raksha Wahi Kar Sakega, Jiske Paas Topi Ke Neeche Sar Hai”
(Only that person can protect and maintain the respect of his cap, who has got a head beneath it.)
“Jo Kavitaayen Aasaani Se Likhi Gayi Thi, Unhen Parhna Kathhin Hota Hai,
Aur Jo Kavitaayen Mushkil Se Likhi Gayi Thi, Unhen Parhna Aasaan Hota Hai!”
(The poems written easily are tough to read and the poems penned after great difficulty, become an easy read.)
Describing it in the much famous FACEBOOK language, a reader would find a precious quote in almost every page of this book which he/she can go on using for months to update all those FB statuses. But on a serious note, if you are really interested in reading something exceptionally outstanding, presented in a highly unique format, then go for this classic as a must. Because MERA DAGHISTAAN is a kind of scripture which deserves to be read, understood and contemplated upon repeatedly by every thinking mind loving the artistic expressions of nature, tradition, language, music & poetry. And after experiencing its enriching creative thoughts, you are sure going to recommend it to many of your like minded friends further, whole heartedly.
MERA DAGHISTAAN - By Rasul Hamzatov (8 September 1923 – 3 November 2003)
(A very praise worthy Hindi Translation by Madanlal ' Madhu', published by Rajkamal Prakashan, Delhi.)

(A Doubt: Though the Hindi translation of the book states its writer’s name as Rasul Hamzatov, the writer’s official website mentions it as Rasul Gamzatov and the difference here seems to be a case of confusing pronunciation only.)
For more information on the famous poet, click the following link:
Bobby Sing
Tags : MERA DAGHISTAAN By Rasul Hamzatov, Book Review by Bobby, Articles on Famous Books of World Literature, Articles on Life music and poetry by Bobby Sing at bobbytalkscinema.com, Rasul Gamzatov Book Review By Bobby Sing
12 March 2014 / bobbysing /
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Satyamev Jayate 2Aamir Khan proved to be a socially aware & concerned celebrity thinking about the country too with his first season of SATYAMEV JAYATE in 2013. Though the fact remains that most of the issues taken up in series are still there without much change or any major action taken towards the suggested improvements, yet the move was no doubt appreciable and the program did receive a grate favourable response all over.

So as expected, watching the first episode of SATYAMEV JAYATE 2 in 2014, I truly felt sad & disturbed thinking about the sickening issue of RAPES in our present society. But at the same time, honestly didn’t feel satisfied looking at the way the subject was treated by the veteran anchor, in an already known or clichéd style simply ignoring the criminal who is actually responsible for the heinous crime, not in the picture. Plus I really felt confused wondering why Aamir was doing the same again, i.e. discussing the problems verbally without coming up with any strict, straight solutions or leading any immediate action movement himself, as required.

In fact, it was an episode made with a fixed mindset talking about the issue in a very helpless manner focusing only on ‘THE AFTER EFFECTS’ and not ‘THE REAL CAUSE’ strangely.
In other words I strongly felt as if they were all talking about the issue, straight away assuming that yes RAPES have always been there in our society from ages and they will be there in the present or future too following an unstoppable mode. Therefore all we need to do is to adapt a more emotional, sympathetic and helpful approach towards its unfortunate victims and forget about finding out the reason that why these are presently happening in the much educated and developed social structure of the new millennium too?
Now, no doubt it’s really sickening to admit that our society is still thinking about the RAPE VICTMS in the same disrespectful manner as we did in 1950s, 1980s and in 2000s too. Moreover, our POLICE still remains shamelessly corrupt, the MEDICAL institutes are disgracefully unhelpful and the JUDICIAL system actually humiliates the RAPE victim more, instead of service her the justice immediately as required. So looking at the sad scenario, we do need to understand a rape victim with all our compassion, love, care and dignity. Plus we also have to ask for a change in the 3 key basic systems of our social structure i.e. Police, Medical and Judiciary as soon as possible.
But at the same time, the other major point of concern remains that why these RAPES are increasing in numbers and are still happening despite all this awareness, agitations, revolts, dharnas and candle marches?
And this is exactly what I found completely missing in the first episode of the series which despite being an emotional one, followed a simple one sided approach solely aiming at getting the sympathy of the viewer with a more commercial motive as it seems. Further it once again touched a relevant, burning topic, leaving it right there without giving any further action plan to achieve the desired change as usual.
Now if truth be told, yes we do need to take a good care of all the unfortunate victims of a rape, saving her from any police, medical or judicial torture after the tragic incident. But the other strong questions which need to be asked, missed by Aamir in his important episode are, that:
WHAT is the kind of mindset which inspires a man to rape a woman?
WHAT is the deficiency in his upbringing which makes him a rapist after becoming a grown up?
WHAT influences him to do so despite having a mother, sister and aunts in his own home?
WHY he sees the other women with an eye of a rapist and not his own women in the close relations in the similar manner?

Moreover in some extreme disgusting cases,
WHY a rape is also seen in the close relations too?????

And to be pretty straight,
WHY these rapes are happening in such a continuous manner in our so called developed society even in the present times?
WHAT we urgently need to teach our SONS about their moral behavior before teaching the DAUGHTERS to be safe while moving out of the house?
WHAT is the undisclosed contribution of our society in BREEDING these kinds of RAPISTS in the normal homes? and
WHAT are we doing wrong that this BREED is rapidly increasing and not getting extinct with the development all over?

Now frankly I am thinking this way because I really don’t want the situation to arise where we are supposed to feel sympathy, offer help or be emotional for a woman after she gets raped………..! But instead we should collectively work towards making a society where she is not prone to such life shattering threats and secure her very existence right in time, instead of consoling her after the cruel event has happened like we have always done in the past.
So where AAMIR KHAN made the whole program assuming that RAPES are inevitable and we need to do something to help these innocent rape victims after they have been brutally attacked, I would like to think about the problem right from its point of origin and seriously wish that we all work together for the same positively, before the RAPE actually happens.
More so, since along with the ‘effect’, the basic ‘cause’ also has to be considered and dealt with strongly, otherwise this would continue forming a never ending chain and we will keep on growing this hidden BREED of RAPISTS amongst us only without any major change for long.
Tags : SATYAMEV JAYATE 2, Its first episode, discussing the issue of DISGUSTING RAPES with a quite helpless approach, Articles on Life By Bobby Sing, Articles on Music, Poetry and Life, Why Rapes are increasing in the developed society.
02 March 2014 / bobbysing /
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