1. Manmohan Singh as the Bhishma Pita of Mahabharata
The Accidental Prime Minister is a 2019 Hindi biographical drama movie starring Anupam Kher, Akshaye Khanna, Suzanne Bernert and Aahana Kumra. The movie explores Dr. Manmohan Singh‘s tenure as the Prime Minister of India. If you have watched the trailer of the film you’ll recall this opening dialogue: “Mujhe to Dr. Saab Mahabharata ke Bhishma Pita jaise lagte hai, jin me koi burai nahi thi, par family drama ke victim ho gaye.” Vijay Ratnakar Gutte’s directorial debut movie revolves exactly around this very line, it turns on the spotlight on the tenure of a technocrat as the PM of world’s largest democracy, crippled by dynasty power.
The film is based on a 2014 memoir by Sanjaya Baru, chief spokesperson and media advisor to Manmohan Singh in the PMO. However, the film does depart in a few scenarios from the book, but essentially keeps the focus on the control Singh exercised over his cabinet.
2. Power dynasty
“100 crore ki aabadai wale desh ko, yehi gine chune logg chalate hai, inki kahaani likhte hai,” says Akshaye as Sanjaya Baru in one of the scenes. He rightly points out that in Mahabharata there were two families, but the Indian political dias has just one – the Gandhis! The movie even includes the time in 2004, when after Indian National Congress President and party High Command Sonia Gandhi had nominated Singh as the PM candidate. Thereafter, the film shows several instances wherein Sonia apparently wanted her son Rahul Gandhi to take over but couldn’t owing to several political scandals.
In the wake of 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Congress, led by Rahul, faced defeat at the hands of Bharatiya Janata Party with Narendra Modi returning as the Prime Minister for a second term. Following the loss, Rahul has offered to resign as Congress President twice now but Sonia has turned it down every time. Looks like a paradigm shift might just be on its way in the INC!
3. CWG scam, Nira Radia tapes
Ranging from Coal, 2G, Chopper to Adarsh, IPL, CWG, Satyam inclusive of the Nira Radia tapes – Congress reeled under one after the other setbacks from 2004-2013. The scam-tainted government failed to deliver on the expectations of the Aam Aadmi, in fact, recession and falling GDP affected them the most. All these scenes and the behind-the-scenes conversations during these fiascos have been very well picturized in the film.
4. India-US nuclear deal
Ending India’s nuclear apartheid, Manmohan Singh signed the India-US civil nuclear deal in July 2005, thereby making it as one of the highpoints of his tenure. The deal was never primarily about nuclear power but about empowering the nuclear energy scene in India. After its nuclear tests, our country had been confined to a technological denial regime to which the deal provided a breakaway.
Moreover, it was the United States of America who proposed the initiative so as to gain upper weight over Chine in the Asia-Pacific region. Importantly, the membership of the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group and of the Missile Technology Control Regime are fruits of Singh’s sowings.
5. Rahul Gandhi
Arjun Mathur plays the role of Rahul Gandhi in The Accidental Prime Minister. However, the makers have also shown real footage of the current Congress President. Do you think the present scenario shall see a different Rahul from what we saw in the film? Will a new era dawn in INC with the Rahul wanting no Gandhi family member to hold the reigns of the party?
On the other hand, Narendra Modi swore in as the Prime Minister of India in the presence of esteemed political and national figures in New Delhi on 20 May 2019. Watch the full video here.
What are your thoughts about The Accidental Prime Minister – hit or miss? Let us know in the comments box below.
In the meantime, catch Ranveer Singh and Sara Ali Khan’s latest blockbuster Simmba on ZEE5now!