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Melvilasam, a play by Surya Krishnamurthy
Submitted by content on Fri, 10/19/2007 - 10:28.
Submitted by bhawani on Sat, 2007-04-14 13:23. Culture
The well known play "Court Martial" by Swadesh Deepak was adapted in Malayalam and staged under the stewardship of Nataraja Krishnamurthy, aka Soorya Krishnamurthy.
In its original version it is the Court martial of a Jawan which also uncovers the dynamics of power equations within the armed forces. A telling commentary on the tyranny that prevails in our system and how justice is only relevant to the position of the the people involved in the issue. Often it weighs in favour of the person who belongs to the better social strata, economic superiority and all other parameters which are always in favour of the senior officer, the higher caste etc.
The all male original play has been given a new humane touch in its Malayalam version with the introduction of the young "Ammu" as the daughter of Ramachandran, the jawan who is facing court martial. A fine human being who repeatedly asserts that he has 'Shot' the two officers. It is only when the cross examination progresses we realise that the accused was an athelete who also was a competitor to the Capt B D Kapur who earlier held the Record for the item! The gentleman-officer is also one who perpetrates violence at home. On the other hand Ramachanran is unmarried, but is the father of Ammu. Ammu's fervent appeals to save her father become more touching when Ramachandran tells the Court that this was the child he rescued from a terrorist infested area under attack. A little child survived, the only one to escape death! He says, "I could not leave her behind Sir."
The officer, Lt Col Surat singh is known for verdicts which have never spared a life. He is shaken by Ammu's appeal. But, in all fairness, his commitment to fairness and justice he concludes by telling Ramachandran, "I must Salute you. Please accept it." He offers salute and the verdict is that Ramachandran must hang because he caused to take a life.
A play with strong resonance and mirroring the built in imbalances in our society. The play scored high on the total recreation of the tension in a court martial.
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