Director Abhishek Dhudhaiya, whose next film, “Bhuj: The Pride of India,” is based on the 1971 Indo-Pakistan War, is also the project’s co-writer. The film tells the story of how 300 women from a village worked hard to build the Bhuj track, which contributed greatly to India’s victory.
Abhishek, who previously directed many television shows, tells the story of IAF squad leader Vijay Karnic (played by Ajay Devgn) and the women of the Madhapar village.
“My grandmother also contributed to the realization of this catwalk. So, I had this in mind that the first time I make a film, it will be on this subject, ”says Abhishek Dhudhaiya, as he recalls how the conception of Bhuj happened: The Pride of India.
The director of Bhuj: The Pride of India elaborates further with a touch of nostalgia in his voice: “In 2017, when I took a break from television, the first thing I did was meet Vijay Karnic. So my nani’s (maternal grandmother’s) friends who are still alive were part of that group of 300 women. So, I went to meet them and understood the events that had taken place. “
The feeling of patriotism is crucial for Bhuj: The Pride of India. So when Abhishek took the project forward, he knew his heart had to be in the right place. “To begin with, I am Indian and I am proud of that. For me, my country comes first and even for my nani the country comes before anything else. So when I wrote the dialogue, I conveyed what I think and what I wanted others to act on. That energy is reflected in the people around you, ”he says.
“For example, when Vijay Karnic was reading the story, the only face on my mind was that of Ajay Devgn. When I finished my story and asked him who he thinks is best for this role, he also said, Ajay Devgn. Therefore, when you want to achieve that connection, you have to feel strongly. “
The next big step in making Bhuj: The Pride of India was casting 300 women. Rather than taking the usual approach of hiring young artists, Abhishek Dhudhaiya knew that this would be an important factor in establishing the strength of the film. Speaking about it, he said: “We had to elect 300 women. Now if you hire young artists, they are free to leave in two or three days for some other project, but that breaks the flow. So we chose 300 women and for the first 15 days we taught them to play the dhol. We made their costumes because at that time the style of dress was the difference and the clothes affected the body language a lot. So we customized the costumes for these women and made them wear them, so they would feel comfortable in them. “
Currently, in the town of Madhapar, there are 60 people, who were part of the iconic movement. All between the ages of 70 and 80. The government of India has also paid tribute to them by making their statues at the entrance of the town.
A historical movement, the women when making the walkway, decided to break down their houses to get the bricks and stones for fugitives once they ran out of material. The director of Bhuj: The Pride of India recalls: “When they needed bricks and stones to make the walkway and the material could not reach them, these people decided that they would break down their houses to use that material. My nani had told me this, but when these people also told me, tears came to my eyes. “
“For a woman, her home is her dream and what happens is that men go to work in other states and countries. So most of the women, children and the elderly live there. So for women, houses and agriculture are everything. They sacrificed their homes for the country. This incident and Vijay Karnic’s challenge to make the airstrip for the county was the most important driving force for me. “
The director, whose Bhuj: The Pride of India will premiere on Disney + Hotstar on August 13, feels this kind of inspiration is rare. “This is a type of inspiration that is not easily found. The defense personnel who protect us are trained, but these villagers were not trained people. Being punctual in a situation like this didn’t come naturally to them. Still they did it and it is their greatest achievement ”, he concludes.
Must read: Will Prabhas break Baahubali record as next with Deepika Padukone to cost 400 million rupees?