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Home Opinions ‘Mirzapur’ is too 2020. How about ‘Thiruvananthapuram’ and ‘Siliguri’ for more reality based drama?

‘Mirzapur’ is too 2020. How about ‘Thiruvananthapuram’ and ‘Siliguri’ for more reality based drama?

I know the creative world is forever looking for something new and refreshing. Names like Badlapur and Mirzapur have become old now.

It happens in Communist ruled Kerala like they show in the movies about UP and Bihar. S V Pradeep was a journalist who had done a series of reports about the Kerala gold scam. He had worked in several nationally known organizations such as Manorama, Kairali TV and even News 18. And on Dec 14, in the broad daylight of 3:30 pm on a busy public street, a truck rammed into his two wheeler. He was crushed to death.

Of course it was just an accident. How could it be otherwise?

Nothing to see here, folks. Indian roads are a dangerous place. Lots of people die in accidents every single day. It’s just fate. Communists believe in fate. Not believing in fate is the opium of the masses.

Now imagine if this had happened in a BJP ruled state. I think S V Pradeep would have received both a Ramon Magsasay Award and a Pulitzer posthumously. S V Pradeep would have become a household name as media, both domestic and global would have raged over this incident. A PIL mafia would have laid siege to the Supreme Court until a court monitored SIT was appointed. As days passed, every member of that SIT would have two choices. Either conclude that there was a conspiracy. Or expect to be accused of colluding with Modi-Shah-Ambani-Adani whatever. Either way the incident would have been added to the chorus over suppression of “dissent.” Fully expect some foreign governments to get involved as well.

A few weeks ago, I remember a minor churn when the Kerala government brought in some kind of punitive law that had a provision of 5 years of jail for “offensive” posts on social media. However, I took the matter very lightly. Just five years in jail? And that too, presumably after some kind of due process in a court of law? Most dissenters under Communist regimes never get such a good deal!

And then, in a blaze of media glory, CM Pinarayi Vijayan took back his own firman. Good on you, old buddy! Make a public ceremony of stepping on someone’s toes and then apologizing profusely. The media was like: awww…this is the worst thing those darling Communists have ever done. And they took it back in just two days. Such delicate souls, these Communists.

I have an idea for a new show that could go on an OTT platform such as Netflix or Prime. It’s called “Thiruvananthapuram.” In it, we could use our imagination to tell a fictional story about all the things that didn’t happen to S V Pradeep, just like in Badlapur or Mirzapur or wherever.

Or we could have say a show called “Siliguri.” A BJP worker died there last week during police action. Don’t blame the police, of course. They were just using water cannon. As for country made bombs and firing of shots, that’s just the traditional background music of Bengal politics. Fantastic law and order situation, I must say.

Wait, didn’t we hear recently that water cannons are a human rights violation? But when did liberals treat BJP workers as human beings?

What happened after the BJP worker died? A quick autopsy discovered that his death was the fault of everyone except the police, the administration and anyone associated with the ruling TMC. The BJP moved a local court which ordered a second autopsy. The police quickly moved court against this order. Why waste time and resources? It was just a BJP worker anyway.

Not every “dissenter” in India is lucky enough that people will worry about whether they are getting enough sippers and straws and sandals or whatever. All that BJP workers in Bengal want is an autopsy. Clearly, that’s too much to ask.

In fact, the BJP has been making issues out of natural deaths way too often these days. In October, they managed to get an order from Calcutta High Court for a second autopsy on another BJP worker who passed away in a city hospital while in jail custody. Waste of resources, obviously. In September, a BJP worker in Bengal’s Raiganj was taken into custody, where he had a heart attack and died. Why make an issue out of this? Why blame the administration when everyone knows that the real culprit is high cholesterol?

Let that be. I am calling upon the creative imagination of our filmmakers. How about you take some inspiration from these incidents and come up with fictional stories of all the things that didn’t happen to S V Pradeep or these BJP workers in Bengal? What would the plot of such a fictional story look like? You could try making a show about a politician – mafia nexus to deny somebody a straw or a sipper. But you know that story wouldn’t sell. To make it a thriller, you need to put some real violence.

I know the creative world is forever looking for something new and refreshing. Names like Badlapur and Mirzapur have become old now. Everyone’s doing it. You need to distinguish yourself from the crowd. Call your show “Siliguri” or “Thiruvananthapuram,” will you?

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Abhishek Banerjee
Abhishek Banerjee is a math lover who may or may not be an Associate Professor at IISc Bangalore. He is the author of Operation Johar - A Love Story, a novel on the pain of left wing terror in Jharkhand, available on Amazon here.  

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