Whenever I read in the newspaper that the Indian diplomat in Pakistan has been called by the Pakistani authorities and thereby an official objection has been registered by Pakistan against India regarding the violation of ceasefire by the Indian soldiers. Well, there’s a well-known maxim in Hindi which applies to this situation – Ulta Chor Kotwaal Ko Daante (The thief scolds the cop whereas it should be the other way round). It’s a glaring example that our perennial enemy is not only wicked but also shameless. During the recent years, the the agreement to maintain ceasefire as well as the sanctity of the Line of Control between the two countries has been violated by the Pakistani soldiers dozens of times. However instead of India, it’s Pakistan who keeps on raising an accusing finger in front. Too much ! Just too much ! Our tolerance and gentlemanly approach has consistently been being looked upon as our weakness not only by our both the sworn enemies, i.e., Pakistan and China but also the world at large for decades. It’s high time, we shift gears in our foreign and defense policies.
We are going to celebrate the 71st Independence Day of our nation on one hand whereas grave threats are there on the borders. Pakistan is attacking and killing our soldiers whereas China is preventing our patrol parties to roam around on our own land. In my humble submission, attack is the best defense. And now India had better adopt this philosophy. The times are no longer to be considered as normal as far as the defense of the borders is concerned. Abnormal times call for offbeat approach. India, as a nation, cannot afford to follow Jesus Christ by presenting the second cheek to the slapper after he has slapped on the first one.On the eve of the 70th anniversary of our country’s political independence, I am posting the review of a flop movie – Aakraman (1975) whose story is linked to India’s war with Pakistan in 1971. The theme of the movie is actually a love-triangle containing two males aspiring for a common female but the war comes in the movie as a twist to take the story to its conclusion.
Aakraman (attack) starts with the romantic encounter of Sheetal (Rekha) with an army officer Lieutenant Sunil Mehra (Rakesh Roshan) and they fall in love. However the trouble is that Sheetal is already engaged to another army officer Major Ajay Varma (Sanjeev Kumar). Sheetal’s parents are no more and she lives with her widower uncle (Ashok Kumar) who has become an alcoholic because of the death of his the only son in the Indo-Pak war of 1965. Since Sheetal is not able to break her matrimonial alliance with Ajay fixed by her uncle and the widow mother of Ajay (Sulochana), she requests Sunil to move out of her life. Sunil, being passionately in love with her, is not able to do so. Himself and Ajay are related to the same company (Rajputana Regiment) in the armed force. Ajay comes to know that some girl has broken Sunil’s heart but remains unaware of the fact that that girl is his fiancee only.
Pakistan attacks India and the war breaks out. During the happenings of this war itself, Ajay becomes aware of the truth. He decides to stay aside from the path of the lovers and sends a letter of this purport to Sheetal through Sunil only when he is sent back because of injuries. Ajay successfully defends his post alongwith his troop but unfortunately gets killed just after that.
Aakraman is definitely a flawed movie because during the entire movie including the war sequence, the focus remains on the love triangle only. The character of Ashok Kumar as the alcoholic uncle of Sheetal raises less sympathy more disgust. Seasoned director J. Om Prakash seems to have tried his level best to make a good movie but it appears that a story involving war was not his cup of tea.
However the movie has its moments. The war scenes coming in the final phase of the movie have been executed very well and can be contrasted with J.P. Dutta’s much superior war movie – Border (1997). The character of an ex-soldier who had to leave the force due to a handicap suffered in the previous war – Karnail Singh (Rajesh Khanna in a guest appearance) has been forced into the narrative which though superfluous, adds some value to it. Overall, this love triangle is not that bad and through the character of Ajay, it is established that when it comes to the defense of our borders, all other mutual differences and issues are to be sunk for the greater cause.
Performance wise talking, all the principal actors have done well. Sulochana and Farida Jalaal (as Ajay’s sister) have also performed satisfactorily in their supporting roles. Sujit Kumar, Keshto Mukherjee, Ravindra Kapoor etc. have delivered perfect performances as various soldiers of the unit. Rajesh Khanna in his guest appearance has delivered his mannerismic performance.
Music by Laxmikant Pyarelaal with the lyrics of Anand Bakshi is good. Patriotic song – Dekho Veer Jawaano Apne Khoon Pe Ye Ilzaam Na Aaye is the best song. The other songs of the album viz. Punjabi Gayenge Marathi Gayenge, Fauzi Gaya Jab Gaaon Mein, Ye Mausam Aaya Hai, Chhoti Umar Mein Lambe Safar Mein, Woh Ek Haseen Ladki etc. are also good and their picturization is also admirable.
The movie is an eye-candy. The cinematographer has captured all the beautiful locations used very well for the screen. Technically it’s up to the mark and not too long also.
Aakraman may not be a great movie but I recommend it as a decent one time watch. At the same time while wishing all my countrymen alongwith the prime minister on the occasion of the Independence Day, I reiterate that the title of this movie (Aakraman) is the best strategy right now. We are facing hidden war from the side of two cunning enemies who have joined hands to get the better of India. Why not go offensive instead of being defensive ? Goswami Tulsidaas had asserted centuries ago – Bhaya Binu Preeti Na Hoi Gosaain (we cannot make our enemy love us without creating a fear of our might in his heart). Our enemies will themselves come to friendly terms with us once they start fearing us. Are you listening Mr. Prime Minister ?
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