Sunday, Alice came over to work on her mom’s gift and then we were off to see an Indian film. It has taken India by storm as the feel good, escape fairy tale and staring Salmon Khan, the most popular actor in all of India. Cross gates 18 Theaters periodically show Indian films for the very large Indian community in the capital district of New York. The theater was about 3/4 full.
On the way over, Alice and I talked about Indian films. They are quite long by American standards, usually three hours with an intermission halfway through for a bathroom break and purchasing more snacks. This film was shot in Hindi and there would be subtitles in English.
One interesting fact I discovered is that due to the huge Muslim population in India, Bollywood yearly releases a family film corresponding to the end of Ramadan or Eid. Did you know that there are more Muslims in India than in Pakistan where there is 100% Muslim population? This is, of course, the result of the shear number of souls living in India. . . .well over one billion.
The plot is that a Pakistani mute girl becomes lost from her mom in Inda, and after a various adventures meets Kahn who plays Pavan. He being of” a kind and clean heart” works to return her to her family in Pakistan. Hindus and Muslims are shown peacefully co-existing which is true in India much of the time. It is a fairy tale and a theme close to Kahn’s heart as a real life Indian with mixed religious background. The chemistry between Pavan (Khan) and Munni ( mute litte girl) is real, electrifying and works beautifully in the film.
The central theme is of India-Pakistan peace and is based not on preachy words but calm coexistence while still pushing all the emotional buttons. The film is mostly light heartted with interaction and dancing , of course !
Then the sad news on Monday morning!
In the video, you can see the Sikh turbans as the Punjab is where Amritsar and the Golden Temple is located, and the Wagah Border which we visited to see the nightly border closing.) According to to the reports I read, Pakistani soldiers sneaked into the Punjab and captured the police station and held it hostage for 12 hours before being killed. Eariler in the week, I heard that all of India was on the highest alert. I can only imagine what that entails having experienced the post 26/11 security. ( That is India’s 9/11 sneak attack .)
As I searched this morning, the politicians in India are spouting their rhetoric in their government but no further fighting has broken out.
The film very clearly said that India wants peace with dignity with Pakistan. I am sure this is a desire of Pakistan , as well. I know there are years of distrust, hatred, and anger over their differences that complicate the process. Many of the problems date back to the partisan and the very thoughtless process lead by the English, who just wanted to leave India as quickly as possible.
It is not dry history at all!
This Is Incredible India!