Who would have thought that the suicide of the boy who wanted to build a flying helicopter but could not do it as the principal in 3 IDIOTS did not encourage such initiative, forcing the boy to commit a suicide would indeed play out in the real life as well? Among the categories of awards that have been announced for the 57th National Awards is an award given to Nikita Bhagat. She has been given Special Mention for her efforts in Cinematography by the Awards jury. Ironically enough, Nikita Bhagat committed suicide last year. She was a student of Film and Television Training Institute where she was learning the cinematography course, before she chose to depart from this world on her own. Nikita was forced to take this extreme step more than a year ago on February 18, 2009, as she could not cope up with the pressure of study and the related work. Incidentally, Nikita Bhagat got special mention for the cinematography that she had done for film VIJAY.
She was the only child of her parents and like 3 IDIOTS she chose to commit suicide as she could not clear the papers at her institute, underlining our penchant to recognize a talent by virtue of an academic degree rather than giving recognition to the inborn talent per se. Had she been alive the exams which she could not have cleared would not have mattered. But it all required a mentoring at the FTII which nobody seems to have done in this case.
Incidentally her depression started when she was not given due recognition for the film CHASINGANGELA JOLIE for which she had done cinematography and it also had been conferred the award by the Indian Documentary Producers Association as the best student's film. It again would have been the case where a teacher would like to have promoted him protegee instead of recognizing the talent, but snuffing out the life of exciting proportions.
Such talents continue to batter against the system which does not wish to promote people with attitude but is interested in encouraging the persons who are happy to toe the lines of the system. Now that 3 IDIOTS has also been conferred with various awards by the National Awards jury, may be Vinod Chopra, Aamir Khan and Raju Hirani need to take it upon themselves to find at least one Rancho in each academic institution. If they are able to do it, the progress that country would achieve would be much more than what is available today. Would the trio take the challenge on behalf of Nikita Bhagat?