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Updated: September 5, 2012 19:03 IST

Deadly tradition

Tehreem Hashmi
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Sanjay Patole and Samapika Debnath.
The Hindu
Sanjay Patole and Samapika Debnath.

Producer Sanjay Patole says “Riwayat” will raise awareness about female foeticide

Often criticised for merely projecting dreams and glamour, these days Hindi films have begun to focus on social ills afflicting us. Part of this newly revived sense of realistic cinema is director Vijay Patkar’s upcoming movie Riwayat.

Scheduled to release this Friday, the film deals with the issue of female foeticide. More than six decades after independence, female foeticide is a reality not only in rural but also urban India.

At a press conference in New Delhi, producer Sanjay Patole talked of the issue in detail. Patole said the film is based on statistics and research. According to the doctor-producer, “It draws from true case studies and every line is rooted to true emotions.”

Explaining the title Patole said Riwayat is something which is just being practised for years. Around half of the victims worldwide are Indian females. “It is neither written in law or holy books nor it is propagated by any saint. It is just something which is stuck in the minds of people from a long time.” The soft spoken producer pointed out that even in today’s age, “many families put pressure on the mother to give birth to boy so that he can take the name of the family forward, light the funeral pyre and become the bread earner of the family. Girls are no less competent than boys. I always try to save the life of every child who comes into my lap,” said Dr. Patole.

When asked that did he get any government support in the project, his answer was not so positive. He said, “I am no Aamir Khan.”

Talking about the impact of socially-relevant themes on the behaviour of audience, Patole said, “Cinema is very powerful tool. We may fail to stop the practice but we will definitely make people think regarding female foeticide and gender discrimination.”

Actor Samapika Debnath, who is plays a journalist in the film, was also present. “Initially it was very difficult for me to get into the role because every scene in the movie is based on real life. I took a lot of training and with time I just got into the role.”

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