This revolutionary documentary chronicles the Navnirman students’ movement in Gujarat (1974), which eventually led to the mass movement of Jayaprakash Narayan in Bihar, culminating in the Emergency being declared (26 June 1975).
This intensely patriotic saga interprets the JP agitation as a latter-day and more radicalised version of Gandhi’s call for non-violent land reform, this time directed against Indira Gandhi’s rule. It includes several speeches by Narayan himself, and one direct interview, and shows the rallies he led in Patna (1974) and New Delhi (1975).
Completed before the declaration of the Emergency, it has an epilogue on the early days of the state crackdown in the months of June and July. Extensively screened by underground groups during the Emergency, the film inaugurates several of the director’s typical documentary strategies, including the use of his own voice and his interviews while holding the camera. Along with its sequel, this patriotic documentary represents definitive coverage of the political conflicts, as well as the rhetoric, characterising those turbulent years.
Did you know?
This movie was completed in secret in 1975 using outdated film stock and makeshift equipment. It was shot partially in Super 8 which was then projected on to a screen and re-filmed with a 16 mm camera. Processing took place in various laboratories for fear of discovery. The sound was almost entirely recorded on a consumer cassette recorder. Read More