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The hero of Chittagong shows valour

Even as Mahatma Gandhi was preaching freedom through non-violence and peace, many other militant groups believed in revolution, seizure and speedy action.

The Chittagong Armoury Raid, planned for execution on April 18, 1930, had the markings of success but destiny had other plans.

A group of armed revolutionaries, led by Surya Sen, a teacher by occupation, marched into Chittagong (now in Bangladesh), then an important army post in East India, destroyed the telegraph and telephone office and killed several members of the ‘European Club.’ They established an office of the so-called ‘Indian Republican Army, Chittagong Branch,’ hoisted the National Flag and proclaimed a Provisional Government before marching towards the Jalalabad Hills to hide in safety.

A few days later, on a traitor’s tip-off, the British Army surrounded the revolutionaries and the scuffle that followed left several people dead on both sides. But the real blow to the Revolutionary Movement occurred almost two years later when Surya Sen was tried and hanged.

It took more than 15 years thereafter for India to obtain freedom from the British. The rest is history.

Ashutosh Gowariker has captured the Movement in Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey, with settings, costumes and music that are reflective of that tense era. Shot in Goa, this could be the ‘most authentic’ narration of the events that occurred in an era that was charged with inextinguishable political fires.

The film could be a turning point for Abhishek Bachchan, who has reportedly brought Surjya Sen back to life. Gowariker deserves credit for having drawn the best out of the cast that includes Deepika Padukone (as Kalpana Datta), Vishakha Singh (Pritilata Waddedar), Sikander Kher (Nirmal Sen) and others.

Mind Blowing Films Limited is bringing Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey to New Zealand and Australia from December 3, 2010.

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