An attempted fable on the communal corruption of the human mind and how we invariably malign our rich legacy in order to ensure our own individual perceptions of right and wrong, this film written and directed by Naeem Siddiqui weaves it’s tale through a rail journey that has its principal characters taking sides on Gandhi’s alleged stupidity in permitting the creation of Pakistan and entertaining the prospect of having Muslims living in partitioned India.
Kailash (Jatin Goswami), estranged from his mother Amma (Pratima Kazmi) for reasons of dharma and karma is forced to return to his native home following the riots that tore asunder a freshly independent and divided India. He obviously has an axe to grind against the ‘mussalmans’ who destroyed his livelihood options.
Enroute he encounters others with differing viewpoints. Divakar (Subrat Dutta) is pro-Gandhi and literally practices what the father of the nation preaches and there are others who sit on the fence and more still who swing from one side to another with every persuasive argument. Needless to say, the train journey is meant to be a voyage of enlightenment where conspicuous contrivances abound in support of a more appeasing approach to differences in religion and culture.
To counter-balance Jatin’s experience Siddiqui manufactures a felling of his mother, Amma, who dies trying to save a bunch of burqa clad Muslim women from a Hindu mob. That’s no problem really but none of the sequences here are constructed with any assurance or craft. Even the timing is off- allowing for delayed reactions that look strained and sound absurd.
The preachy tone and the carpi juxtapositions leave the narrative unbalanced and makes the entire theatre of contrivances seem absurd. Sanjay Rai’s faulty storyline, Rana Mazumdar’s all-too-loud and over-involved background score and Siddiqui’s ineffectual helming puts paid to any affect here. Subrat Dutta digs in well to generate empathy for Diwakar’s Gandhian philosophy. Samiksha Bhatnagar as Kailas’s wife has little to do other than make hesitant plays at appeasement and Jatin Goswami fails to look and sound credible in a poorly written role. Not a happening experience this!
Film: Hamne Gandhi Ko Maar Diya
Cast: Jatin Goswami, Subrat Dutta, Samiksha Bhatnagar, Pratima Kazmi
Director: Naeem Siddiqui
Rating: * *