Strong Script saves Salman’s Tubelight from going off

Cast: Salman Khan, Sohail Khan, Zhu Zhu, Matin Rey Tangu, Om Puri, Mohammed   Zeeshan Ayyub.
Director: Kabir Khan
Rating: 2.5 stars (out of 5)

As the Bollywood tradition goes, 2017 also witnessed actor Salman Khan celebrating Eid with his fans with his latest venture ‘Tubelight’. The Salman-Kabir Khan actor-director duo famous for Ek Tha Tiger and Bajrangi Bhaijaan, delivered another film for ‘Bhai’ fans to enjoy during the festival.

The movie claimed to be an emotional and family watch by the star is set in the backdrop of the 1962 Indo-China war and tries to portray the consequences of war on not only the soldiers’ lives but also the lives of their loved ones who are left behind waiting for their return.

Salman Khan has been trying to reinvent his image with projects like Bajrangi Bhaijaan and now Tubelight. The 51-year-old actor has attempted to venture far from his hero image to the vulnerable character of a man with the innocence and understanding of a child. The film, an official adaptation of the 2015 Hollywood film ‘Little Boy’ puts Salman in the role of a brother Lakshman, determined to bring back his younger brother Bharat, portrayed by Sohail Khan, who has gone to fight the 1962 war.

The chemistry between the Khan brothers manages to come out beautifully in some moments, but also becomes a drag many times. The awkward stance of Sohail Khan is clearly visible in the film, who doesn’t look at ease with his character. Playing a mentally-disabled character, called Tubelight by everyone around him, Salman is somewhere able to make up for his otherwise expression less face.

The makers of the film possibly tried to use the adorable child actor formula to add to the charm of the film again;eight-year-old Matin Rey Tangu failed to capture everyone’s audience unlike Harshaali who had managed to outshine even Salman in Bajrangi Bhaijaan.

The scripting and camera of the film manage to win hearts to quite an extent. Scriptwriters Kabir Khan, Parveez Sheikh and Sandeep Srivastava deserve all the appreciation for the political commentary included in the film. Statements like “I don’t need a certificate to prove that I am an Indian” by Chinese actress Zhu Zhu who plays Matin’s mother clearly takes a dig at the constant certification of patriotism being awarded in our country recently. Mocking the concept of the person shouting ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’ the loudest to be the real Indian, again proves to a very smart and much needed take on the pitiable definition of nationalism gaining popularity in our nation. Lens work done by Aseem Mishra beautifully captures places like Ladakh and Manali, at the same time managing to recreate the 1960s aura.

The message of inclusiveness and Gandhian ideals and making friends with the enemy, although sounds cliché but comes out very innocently and beautifully on the screen. The acting definitely disappoints, but the script manages to save the film to some extent. The first half is far more engaging as the second becomes a bit of a drag. The female actors in the film aren’t able to leave their impact, while the supporting cast including Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub as Narayan and Yashpal Sharma as Major Tokas manage to do justice to their parts.

The cameo of Shah Rukh Khan comes out as a surprise but doesn’t really impress. The music of the film is way too loud, the songs are shot very well and manage to convey the emotions of the moments, but the makers could have possibly toned the sound a bit down as it unnecessarily overshadows the film.

The film being the late veteran Om Puri’s last, stars him in a fatherly role and plays out as a poetic eulogy to the legend.

*Spoiler Alert*

The symbolism in some of the scenes such as the one where Lakshman spreads Bharat’s ashes in the river with the latter’s soul running forward and mixing with the ashes comes out very strongly and conveys the emotions spot on. Although the scene is a copied one, it still plays out strikingly and creates a mark on the audience’s minds and hearts.

 

Overall, the simplicity in the approach and the attempt by Salman Khan to depict the naivety works out to some extent, although the scope of improvement is very much there. It might have been interesting if more emphasis could have been on child actor, still the film passes on as a one-time watch

Curfew imposed in Kashmir valley on Eid

The Jammu and Kashmir state administration on Tuesday banned gatherings at popular mosques and imposed curfew in all ten districts in the Kashmir valley. The decision comes in the wake of death of two people in clashes across the valley, which took place after morning prayers of Eid.

One death was reported during clashes with security forces in Jammu and Kashmir’s Bandipora district as well.

The army has been asked to be on standby, in case there is a fresh episode of outbreak of violence. The valley has been witnessing unrest for  the past two and a half months, leading to the death of 75 people.

The curfew will be enforced from midnight and in addition to this, the army has been placed at different points.

This is the first time that a curfew has been imposed on the day of Eid.

The army has deployed drones and choppers to keep the situation under control.

Further, the government has shutdown internet services of all telecom networks and mobile networks apart from BSNL for the next three days.

Communal tensions in three districts in Odisha as celebrations go haywire

As communal tensions pile up in three districts in Odisha over the immersion of Lord Ganesha and another diety, the government has been forced to impose section 144 of CrPc.  Rourkela, Soro and Kendrapada in the north and eastern areas of the state respectively are affected regions.

After the hurling of bricks on the Ganesh idol in Rourkela around 11pm near minority dominated Nala  section 144 was imposed late Monday night Road in Rourkela the enraged crowd engaged in stone pelting at each other and the majority community set fire to a car and damaged a couple of scooters. The police restored the crowd by a mid lathi-charging.

Challenging the flinging of blocks, individuals from a few Puja Committees kept their parade on the road about demanding steps against the miscreants.

Similarly in the Patamundai town of Kendrapada the tempers continued to erupt as the muslim community opposed the use of loudspeakers and beating of drums in close proximity of their mosque. More than 1000 people protested by disrupting the flow of traffic on the Pattamundai- Rajnagar road demanding action against people who tried to restrict the use of loud of loudspeakers.

Police has been deployed in adequate numbers in view of the anticipated troubles as per Kendarapad SP Nitinjit Singh.

In Soro the 12-hour curfew has been lifted on Tuesday morning following scattered incidents of communal violence since last three days. The police have allowed the minority to hold mass prayers in the occasion of Eid, but processions are not allowed. They also specified thatprohibitory orders under section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code would still be in force barring a few hours on Tuesday in view of Eid. Curfew was imposed last evening after the torching of five shops and nine persons have been arrested so far.

Sources: Firstpost, The Indian Express 

Women allowed to offer Eid ‘namaz’ for the first time at Aishbagh Dargah in Lucknow

On the occasion of Id-ul-Fitr, Lucknow’s famous Aishbagh dargah made special arrangements for women offering the ‘namaz’. This move came as a welcome change in respect to the debates happening all over the country regarding the entry of women in religious places.

The Imam of the Eidgah Maulana Khalid Rasheed Farangi Mahali told PTI on Wednesday that special enclosures have been made first time in the premises to allow women to offer namaz.

Though entry of women is not banned in the mausoleums but this was the first time that special arrangements were made for them.

According to Maulana, the special enclosures will encourage more women to come and offer their prayers on the occasion of Id-ul-fitr. He also termed this as a very progressive move on the part of the Eidgah authorities.

After the Shani Singhanapur temple in Maharashtra lifted the ban on the entry of women in the temple premises, the Bhartiya Muslim Mahila Aandolan have also petitioned to the Bombay High Court regarding lifting the ban on the entry of women in the Haji Ali Dargah in Mumbai, Maharashtra.

Eid Celebrations Marred by 2nd Terror Attack in Bangladesh

Four have been killed and about 12 injured by Islamic extremists during the Eid prayers in Kishoregonj, Bangladesh. The terrorists launched homemade bombs at the prayer site, where more than two hundred thousand people had gathered to commemorate Eid,reported the Times of India.

Officials say that one of the attackers was shot dead, while the other one was captured alive. This event took place less than a week after the horrific hostage attack at a small café in Dhaka by seven Islamic terrorists, that killed 22 civilians.

Amongst the casualties, two police officers and one woman were killed. Once the bomb exploded, the police opened fire at the terrorists simultaneously injuring innocent bystanders.

Reports suggest that the Eid attack was targeted at the main Imam, or chief leader, who is widely known in the district for his secular views.

The government responded to this attack by denying that international Islamic extremist forces are at work, instead stating that it was the work of local militants, who are carrying out these activities in an effort to destabilise the government.

Bangladesh has seen a rise of Islamic extremism since 2013, with the brutal killings of liberal thinkers, bloggers and activists.

Violence in Kishtwar, mobile services blocked

Security personnel keeping a tight vigil at a market during Jammu bandh called in protest against Kishtwar violence. Photo: PTI.
Security personnel keeping a tight vigil at a market during Jammu bandh called in protest against Kishtwar violence. Photo: PTI.

SRINAGAR/JAMMU: Due to the communal clashes in Kishtwar, nine out of ten districts in Jammu were clamped with curfew. The Friday Eid celebrations were affected by the unrest claiming two lives and scores injured. The army staged flag marches as curfew was extended to Kathua, Samba, Udhampur, Doda and Ramban districts.

Angry mob set shops and car on fire in the New Plot area of Jammu on Saturday night, prompting the authorities to impose curfew in several other areas including Gandhi Nagar, Pacca Danga, Bakshi Nagar, Pir Mitha, Trikuta Nagar, Janipur, Satwari, Channi Himmat, Bagh-e-Bahu and Nowabad.

Rajouri town witnessed stone throwing on mosque as Kishtwar remained under curfew surveillance for the third day and the authorities clamped internet services to prevent rumour-mongers from taking advantage of the communally-surcharged situation. Arun Jaitley was denied entry due to the same.

Chief Minister Omar Abdullah reached Jammu on Sunday afternoon to take stock of the situation, meanwhile, in Srinagar, PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti and separatist leaders appealed for peace and harmony.

Read more here.

(With inputs from Chaitali Gurusahani)

Syrian president unharmed after alleged attack on motorcade

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad | Image: wikia.com

The Tahrir al-Sham rebel brigade said in a statement today that they had launched an armed assault on Syrian President Bashir-al-Assad’s motorcade, as he was going to offer Eid prayers in a mosque in Damascus.

The Tahrir al-Sham brigade, a faction of the Free Syrian Army, proclaimed “After conducting reconnaissance (on) the timing and course of Al-Asaad’s motorcade the area was hit with artillery. We pray to God and await the field report about the results.”

But just a few hours after this statement, Syrian state television showed Al-Assad offering his prayers at the Anas bin Malek Mosque in the Malki district, close to his personal residence.

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