KOLKATA: Maulana Abul Kalam Azad’s vision of unity across all communities and his contribution to the country should be highlighted more, Rajendra Sanjay, director of the first feature film on the national leader, said at the trailer launch event here on Friday.
The film, titled “Woh Jo Tha Ek Massiah-Maulana Azad” is scheduled for release on January 18 across the country.
“Very few people know about his childhood days and his contributions. During research, I found out that he was outspoken, just and fair. He was not influenced by religion and was passionate about humanity. His unique personality should be highlighted more,” Sanjay said.
“He guided the masses impartially without any sort of bias and everyone knows how the current scenario is. This film speaks in a subtle manner and it is up to the viewers to understand the messages and learn from the great leader,” he noted.
Sanjay, who also produced the film shot in Mumbai, Delhi and Kolkata, mentioned that Azad who grew up in the then Calcutta realised the intentions of the British and got involved in the Freedom Struggle.
He said Azad also expressed stern criticism of the British in his handwritten magazine named “Narang-e-Alam”, “Al-Hilal” and “Al Balah”.
Asked about the portrayal of other iconic leaders in the film, the director said, he himself essayed the role of Mahatma Gandhi in the film and revealed that important events like partition, have been symbolically portrayed in his upcoming work without being inclined to any political ideology.
“Azad was not just an individual, he was attached to the masses. He understood them very well and worked for the right cause. Azad strongly believed in Hindu-Muslim unity. We have tried to highlight that in the film.”
Sanjay mentioned that the film tries to cover his entire life and how he boosted the study of science and technology in a modern way as the first Education Minister of Independent India.
Linesh Fanse, a Gujarati theatre artist who plays the titular role, said: “I feel that we had studied very less about Maulana Azad in our textbooks. Detailed research has been done for the film. I had to learn Hindi and Urdu language for the role.”
The censor board has passed the film without any cuts and given “U” (Unrestricted Public Exhibition) certificate.