Pan Singh Tomar
Pan Singh Tomar
Sudhansu R Das
The movie, Pan Singh Tomar, directed by Tigmanshu Dhulia has beautifully depicted the life of a legendary Indian sportsman who turned into a dacoit due to collapse in governance mechanism which made the jungle rule more relevant in his village. The journey from an innocent sportsman of the Indian Army into a dreaded Chambal dacoit has been beautifully documented in the movie. Veteran actor Irfan Khan makes the film looks so real.
Pan Singh Tomar was the seven times national champion in steeple chase event. He represented India in 1958 Asian Games. He retired from the Army and returned home to settle in his small village. His boundless love for his village let Pan Singh refuse a coaching job in the Army. Life was not all that smooth for Pan Singh in his village. He soon realised the life of civilian is not better than a slave. The film has beautifully documented how the deep-rooted corruption in the revenue department and the nexus between the police and the influential people made common man’s life hell in backward districts, where people quietly listen to the dictate of a handful of rich thugs. Pan Singh tried to get back his land from his rogue relative who converted his ancestral land in his name. Pan Singh’s effort to get justice brought him heap of insult only. His rogue relative raided his house and brutally killed his old mother when her wife and children narrowly escaped the attack. The film has beautifully shown how administrative mechanism has been hijacked by a handful of rich and influential people in the society. When Pan Singh went to lodge an FIR against his rogue relative, who had seriously wounded Pan Singh’s kin, the police did not take any action, rather insulted him. Helpless Pan Singh showed his medals to the incharge of the Thana only to get more abuses from the police man. Pan Singh had no option but to choose the life of dacoit only to get justice in his own way. The situation compels people either to bow down before the henchmen, who controlled the tools of governance or to become an outcaste. In the climax scene, Pan Singh asks his rogue relative why you have put the gun in my hand and make me stalk the entire Chambal like a mad dog. Pan Singh said when he was a national champion and respectful citizen his voice was not heard and justice was denied to him. When he turned to a dreaded dacoit government even wanted to negotiate with him and wanted to give him so many packages.
Pan Singh’s refusal to accept the job of a coach in Army made him a real winner. Though Pan Singh Tomar is a reaction to the poor governance and corruption in the society, it is not the permanent solution. The real solution lies in shaping up of human beings from mothers’ womb. India needs to create generations of people with all finer human virtues: love, sympathy, both moral and physical courage, discipline and a deep sense of belongingness to the nation and its culture. For this, the nation needs massive physical and spiritual energy. Pan Singh Tomar is a must see movie for all public representatives and people in governance mechanism.