REVIEW OF MOVIE ARTICLE 15
Updated: Feb 8, 2021
Gaurav Singh, II year of B.A.,LL.B. from DES Shri Navalmal Firodia Law College, Pune
The majority of “India'' is not “Bharat”. Don’t get confused by the word Bharat, it is not from Article 1 of the constitution of India. This word represents India which is in majority but doesn’t get its due share. Yes, I am talking about rural India, marginalized India and poor India. We often get confused by the skyscrapers of Delhi and Bombay that this is what India is. But the truth is 70% of India consists of the rural one.
The movie is talking about this India only i.e. Bharat.
The very first scene of the protagonist and different characters of the village give us a bitter taste about the disparity among India. Villagers singing a song showcasing disparity among rich and poor and giving a message that “you will get offended if I say something” and then the main protagonist IPS Ayan Ranjan coming in his car listening to the very famous socialist song of Bob Dylan “Blowin in the wind”. These are the two different worlds. One who is suffering the ills and facing problems in India and one who romanticize about it. I call this movie “an interaction of India and Bharat”.
In sociology, we study this in “SOCIAL STRATIFICATION”.
Article 15 of the Indian constitution states that “there shall be no discrimination on the grounds of religion, caste, colour, creed, sex or place of birth. But it is not the case of ground reality, this equality doesn’t reflect in the Indian diaspora. There are problems and inequality all around the globe but the Indian mess is something very historic. We are following the age-old caste system. We can easily see people getting into the manholes which are banned by the Honourable Supreme court of India but more disheartening is that it has become normal, the movie also showcases it. The movie revolves around a gang rape case happened in a village of Uttar Pradesh and in the ongoing process it tackles the issue like caste system and how deeply it is ingrained in the Indian society. If you are denying this by saying that now this doesn’t happen in most of India or even in urban India then just think about Aditi’s dialogue that our mom also used to keep the utensils of maid’s separately a few years back. If this isn’t the case in your home then congrats but this is the reality of most of India. The movie also showcases how the caste system is prevalent in our society as policemen were stressing on their last names when they were introducing themselves or Chandrabhan advised Ayan not to take the water bottle from a village of a lower caste. There is also a catch in the movie when Ayan asked everybody about their caste, we came to know that in each caste there is itself another hierarchy which shows that just being an upper-caste doesn’t make you discriminatory but you can be discriminatory even being a lower caste to the people who are further lower in that strata.
Some more things which movie showcases and has sociological importance:
1. Ayan to Aditi: You want a Hero
Aditi to Ayan: We don’t want a hero but people who don’t wait for a Hero.
This is the basic human nature that we don’t want to take initiative and wait for someone whom we idolize and then treat them like a God.
2. Inspector Brahmadatt treats dogs with utmost care but having prejudice and discriminatory nature towards the people of the lower caste
This showcases that people are not born bad but due to the environment they get their biases and changing this scenario is known as social reform and this can be done through social movements. That’s why it is also important that we should unlearn our biases.
3. Chandrabhan to Ayan: If everybody will get equal who will become the King.
Ayan reverted this statement to Aditi to which she replied that why do we even need a King.
This sentence of Aditi has the essence of democracy that there is no place of a king in democracy, no one is superior and it rejects idolism, divine theory, elitism or even a poster boy in a democracy.
This movie has similar instances which we see in the real world. Girls and women of lower caste getting raped, people getting beaten up because they have entered into a temple, men going into manholes and all this is happening because of one main reason that is the caste system.
It also showcases that political class is just exploiting lower caste people and appeasing them just for their votes.
But there is hope, it's in the form of Ayan Ranjan. You are the hope and as the preamble of the constitution states “We, the people of India”, yes, we are the hope.
The dialogue of Ayan that “violence which is inside our system, we don’t address it but accept it by considering it as law and order”. We have to change this law and order. Babasaheb B.R. Ambedkar has said that if this constitution is being misused, I will be the first person to burn this book. We will not let this happen. We have to unmess (a term coined in the film by Ayan) this historic mess.