SEZ it all

People view land in different ways. While for some,it is nothing but just another commodity that can be put to use...

Written by Rohan Swamy | Published: March 11, 2009 2:27 am

The cast and crew of Made in China speak about their experiences and why a serious issue like the SEZ needs to be talked about

People view land in different ways. While for some,it is nothing but just another commodity that can be put to use,to a huge majority whose livelihood depends on tilling,it represents the goddess earth and they worship it and consider it sacred. Made in China is one such story about the trials and tribulations faced by farmers when industrialists and corrupt politicians decide to convert their fertile lands into a SEZ (Special Economic Zone),” says director Santosh Kolhe on his forthcoming film Made in China which is slated to hit theatres across the state on March 15.

Clearing the mystery surrounding the movie’s name,he adds,“The title of the movie should justify its content and gradually lead the viewer to understanding what it’s about. The title was decided after a lot of discussion and it was named Made in China because SEZs have originated from China and were first set up in cities like Shanghai and Beijing. It was here that the concept of use and throw was first invented. The title is in reference to the same SEZs which also form a core plot of the movie.”

The plot of the movie revolves around a prosperous farmer’s household and how the farmer and the entire village are held to ransom by the local minister,who plans to construct an SEZ on fertile farmlands. What further complicates matters is the fact that the politician is the farmer’s own brother,who is bent on getting an SEZ in the region even if it means hardships for farmers.

Speaking about his role in the movie,Sandeep Kulkarni says,“I play the role of Mohit Jagdale,the progressive son of the Jagdale household,who has recently returned from abroad,bringing along with him new techniques of farming. Eventually Mohit is on a crossroads with my uncle Appasaheb Jagdale,who is the local politician and is bent on bringing in an SEZ to the village in the name of economic development. The main aim of my character is not to oppose SEZ’s but to oppose them being constructed on fertile farm land.”

Madhura Velankar,who plays Appasaheb’s progressive and modern daughter Prachi,says,“I share my father’s vision to bring SEZs to the village. Since my character has studied in the US,she has a capitalist bent of mind. She is an idealist and believes that these special economic zones will bring about the progress of the nation even if it means that farmers have to give up their lands. Whilst most people might view my character in a negative hue,I would say she has more of a grayish shade to her own persona.”

The movie has already generated enough buzz in the Marathi film circuit after having won the Star Screen Award for the Best Marathi Film. However,the fate of the film will be decided when the movie opens in theatres on March 13.

“The fact that the film deals with a very real and serious issue and that almost all the scenes were shot on location will go a long way in ensuring that it is accepted widely by the masses,” says director Santosh Kolhe.

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