Joginder Dabas is a friend based out of Delhi who was at the forefront during the farmers’ agitation and then he dropped out of the social media. When the release date of PANCHAYAT 2 was announced he came back to the social India to inform his near and dear ones that PANCHYAT 2 is coming. So, the matters which Season 1 or PANCHAYAT had covered had genuinely touched chords of the people who have fingers of their hands in the rural pie. It is people like Joginder Dabas whose endorsement for PANCHAYAT makes it an event for the OTT platform.
PANCHAYAT 2 began from where the first season brought down the shutters, Abhishek was on the water tank, but he was not there for his Rinkie but sipping his tea, preparing for his CAT exams as also planning to improve the lives of the ordinary in Phulera village.
Season 2 of PANCHAYAT spread over 8 episodes again has tried to address the issues of concern which matter for rural people in day-to-day life. If electricity was the focus area in Season 1, in Season 2 it is the ODF or Open Defecation Free campaign of the Government of India. It has also with a black slap touched upon Article 377 as well.
The so-called romance for a US return to India and his aspirations to experience rural life for a day or so and the disconnect that friend of Abhishek has for the rural life has been brought about in a succinctly humorous manner. The highlight of this interaction between Abhishek and his friend is that Abhishek has now become grounded and he is not affected by the materialism that his friend shares with him, though he is preparing for his CAT exams and the whole of the village helps in his preparations. His friend has an enthusiasm to draw water out of the hand pump but after pumping few strokes he starts groping for his breath and there is a subtle ironic hint at the physical strength that is derived through gym driven paraphernalia and the strength that is earned through sweat and grime in the dusty environment of the rural landscape.
For a farmer, it is his produce which he can share as a gift with pride to his near and dear ones is the message that has been introduced through the character of Raghubir Yadav. Raghubir Yadav gives home grown bottle gourds as a gift with pride to Abhishek and Abhishek has a collection of lauki which he does not know what to do with, but such is his affinity with Pradhan ji that he continues to keep them as trophies.
CCTV has also been introduced as an element of humour in the Second season and the manner in which the outreach of camera can manifest is underlined through humorous episodes of a search for goats and a pair of slippers. CCTV has the potential to address minor irritants happening in the rural landscape and it has been underlined subtly in the Season 2.
While a politician as a character has also been introduced in the Season 2, like a breath of fresh air, PANCHAYAT 2 has underlined that if the rural folk unite then a politician also has to surrender as well. The message is that if the villagers and the local people work in harmony then this bonding has the potential to change the dynamics of day-to-day working in the villages.
The sudden change that last episode gravitates to, of a soldier from a village getting martyred and how the whole village rises in unison brings the curtains on the Season 2 on a sombre note, but with a hope of caring for each other.
In fact, it is the bottom-line of the Season 2, mutual care and respect for each other, so a Pradhan rises and revolts against a politician when he abuses Abhishek, a caring father calls out the arrogance of a father of a groom to be and declines to get her daughter married, and a caring Abhishek who for Rinkie calls up her would have been groom and fires him for his flirtations.
Panchayat 2 has a very slow pace, a thehrao in Hindi which we all aspire for in this present life where we all are running the rat race of different kinds. It humbly cajoles to take a pause and enjoy what life has to offer. More such PANCHAYATS from different parts of the country is the need of the hour.
Web Series: Panchayat 2
Director: Deepak Kumar Mishra
Cast: Jitendra Kumar, Neena Gupta, Raghubir Yadav, Faisal Malik, Chandan Roy