With Parmanu: The Story of Pokhran’s release just around the corner, people are naturally interested in knowing the history behind the true story the film is based on. The Abhishek Sharma directorial stars John Abraham, Diana Penty and Boman Irani, among others, and is based on the nuclear bomb test explosions Indian Army conducted at Pokhran in 1998.
John, who plays the lead in Parmanu recently revealed about his character in an interview with IANS. “It is based on the real incident and it happened on May 11, 1998. To prepare for the role we did a lot of workshops. My character’s name is Ashwath Raina who is a junior bureaucrat in the Prime Minister’s Office and to play this role, I had to deconstruct myself to look similar to a real-life bureaucrat,” the actor said, who has also co-produced the film.
So what were the Pokharan tests all about?
India had conducted two nuclear tests from May 11-May 13 two decades ago. The tests, once the world came to know about them, were received critically by quite a few supernations such as the US, China, as well as the UK. According to reports, New Delhi had then declared that it was not inclined to use the nuclear weapons in the first place. However, it also stated that it would not shy away from using the weapons if need be.
Until that fateful year, India had not really made noise in the world regarding nuclear weapons. But come 1998, things took a drastic turn. Pokhran II was a series of five nuclear bomb test explosions conducted by the Indian army at the Pokhran Test Range. It was the second nuclear test conducted by the country. The first was held as early as May 1974 and was called Smiling Buddha, ironically enough.
The tests were five, the first to be tested was a fusion bomb, followed by four more trials involving fission bombs. Later, then-Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee held a press conference to declare India as a nuclear state, following the tests held at Pokhran. Vajpayee had a tough time trying to convince other nations of the necessity of the nuclear tests as various sanctions were filed against India post the incident.
Parmanu: The Story of Pokhran will hit the big screen on May 25, 2018. The movie has been produced by Zee Studios and Kyta Productions in association with JA Entertainment.