‘Sirf Ek Bandaa Kaafi Hai’: A review of a well-acted Indian courtroom drama

Manoj Bajpayee has given a powerful, one of his best performance till date in this film.

‘Sirf Ek Bandaa Kaafi Hai’ is a meaningful film with a great message for parents to follow.

The film depicts the victory of truth over evil. This brilliantly made film is a well-acted courtroom drama. In the plot, a minor girl is sexually assaulted by a self-styled Godman. The girl and her parents file a report in the police station, to seek justice and remain steadfast till they get justice from the court.

At the beginning of the story, a minor girl staying in the hostel develops stomach pain so her parents are informed. The parents, who believe that their religious leader, a baba, is a divine incarnation, take the daughter to his ashram for treatment. The debauchee Baba asks the parents to sit outside, calls the girl to his private room, and sexually assaults her on the pretext of miraculously ridding her of evil spirits. After coming out, the scared girl tells her mother that ‘Baba is not a God’. Panicked and stunned by this unexpected incident, the girl courageously goes to the police station with her parents to file an FIR against Baba. Taking cognisance of the report of the victim, the police, realizing the seriousness of the matter, arrests Baba from his ashram and imprisons him behind bars.

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Image: @Its_karishma Twitter

Director Apoorv Singh Karki has done a brilliant job, depicting the problems and hurdles common people face while fighting a court case against high-profile people. The expectations from the director are raised, as he has proved that if he gets more strong stories with a meaningful message for society, he can create more such masterpieces. The entire film focuses on the court trial, showing how the media manages to grab the attention of the audience by presenting the courtroom drama in an interesting manner.

Manoj Bajpayee, an actor having immense possibilities in the acting field, is a highly talented actor who brings alive each character with his soulful acting. Manoj Bajpayee has given a powerful, one of his best performance till date in this film. He plays a simple man but professionally competent lawyer P.C. Solanki, who fights the case of the victim teenager ‘Nu’.

Manoj, along with the opposition counsel, humbly requests the judge that in view of the sensitive questions being asked to the victim about the sexual assault, except her parents, no one else should be present in the courtroom. Showing Manoj Bajpayee’s highly sensitive character, the director has shot this scene with a mature approach.

One of the most brilliant scenes in the movie comes towards the end depicting the last day of the case in court. Giving too many details will act as a spoiler but to just give a hint it shows Manoj quoting a dialogue between Bhagwan Shiva and Devi Parvati in relation to Raavan to prove an important point.

In the final courtroom scene Manoj Bajpayee’s constant change in facial expressions due to the height of passion, his outbursts, amazing inflection in his voice during dialogues, his trembling hand and then clenched fists, emphatically addressing the judge a clear request that ‘the guilty baba who committed the heinous act should be hanged’ – all this is a culmination of his brilliance and his masterful performance.

Image: @advsumitsingh Twitter

While watching the film, the audience immediately understands and realises that this film is allegedly based on the misdeed of a self-styled Godman who is now serving a life sentence. However, after watching this well-made film, a thought occurs that why aren’t more such films made on the misdeeds of other community or religious leaders who have committed similar heinous crimes as worldwide audiences must be made aware of their acts too!

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Contributing Author: Sushma ‘Shandilya’ is a well-known Hindi poet and writer based in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India. Her short stories, articles and plays have been published in leading Indian publications. Sushma ‘Shandilya’ writes on various contemporary issues including themes around women empowerment. She is also a yoga teacher.

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