Sunday, July 11, 2010
Peepli Live - Touching The Right Note
By Manuwant Choudhary
Forget the strikes against price rise called by opposition political parties in India, its this Aamir Khan produced film `Peepli Live' that will touch the right note.
Set against an upcoming election two farmers are about to lose their lands as they owe money to a government bank and when they seek advice from a local politician he tells them the best solution is they commit suicide so the government will instead have to pay them money. This leads to a media frenzy as to which farmer will commit suicide.
The plot only partly reflects the crisis being faced in rural India and although Dr. Manmohan Singh can get re-elected Prime Minister there is a simmerig discontent that could well get out of control despite Narega and all government doles.
Thousands of farmers in Maharashtra have committed suicide while India's agriculture minister Sharad Pawar spends his time sorting cricket controversies and being on the International Cricket Board.
Its a song in Peepli Live sung in a local dialect that really strikes a chord..."Hamaar Saiyaan bahut kamaat hai...lekin sab dayan kaa jayat hai..." (My husband earns a lot but all of it is eaten by a witch..." You can watch an edited YouTube version alongside this blog.
Of course, the witch referred to here is `Price Rise' but who is the witch of Indian politics. Any guesses?