Ashok Pandit to direct Anupam Kher's 'Hindu-An Outsider'!
By Manissha Despaande, Bollywood Trade News Network
After having dealt with the subject of the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits in his last film, SHEEN, Ashok Pandit's next film, HINDU-AN OUTSIDER, will portray the emotional anguish of a father and son, who go back to their hometown in Kashmir and find themselves as outsiders in their own land. The film is being produced by Pandit's close friend Anupam Kher- a Kashmiri himself, who has witnessed his grandparents, uncles and aunts being uprooted from Kashmir. Kher will also play the role of the father in the film.
Says Pandit, "There's a big difference between my last film SHEEN and this one, though both revolve around the problem of Kashmiri Pandits, who have become strangers in their own land. HINDU- AN OUTSIDER is a family drama that portrays the emotional vacuum experienced by Pandits who feel like outsiders in their own place, which was once a home for them. The trees, flowers and the birds all give the feeling that they are not wanted. They can smell gunpowder in the air and not roses. It is as if they are in an alien world, with a totally different culture," Pandit reveals.
Pandit who has been fighting for the rights of Kashmiri Pandits through 'Panun Kashmir' an organization formed for their cause, points out that the subject is very close to his heart. "It is a pain that has lived with me over the years every time I see the yearning in the eyes of my family members and brethren, who want to return to their homeland but cannot do so. The film will provide me an outlet for my pent up feelings," he says.
As for Anupam Kher, Pandit points out that there couldn't have been a more apt producer for the film other than Kher. "He can well identify with the anguish and pain that we are all going through, being a Kashmiri Pandit himself. Besides the two of us have been close friends over the years," he says.
More recently, Pandit had the opportunity of making a guest appearance in Kher's film, MAINE GANDHI KO NAHI MARA. So is he looking forward to directing Kher this time? "He's a terrific actor and it would be a great experience directing him," he reveals.
Pandit is currently scripting the film with his writer friend, Raman Kumar. The film will be shot in Kashmir according to him. He is also on the look out for a promising young actor who will play the role of Anupam Kher's son in the film.