Slain human rights lawyer Shahid Azmi’s brother Khalid says he was moved to see the journey of his older sibling on screen and is quite content with the biopic made by Hansal Mehta as it’s almost accurate.
Shahid’s life had all the twists and turns of a Bollywood film right from his arrest during the communal riots that rocked Mumbai in 1992-1993 to his enrollment for a law degree when he came out after serving a jail term and then becoming a criminal defense lawyer.
He was the nephew of Samajwadi Party leader Abu Asim Azmi and had appeared as a defence advocate for accused in the Mumbai train blasts,for Arif Paanwala,who was acquitted in the 2006 Ghatkopar bus blast case and then Faheem Ansari,who was let off in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack case.
The film ‘Shahid’ depicts his real-life story on screen. It was while he was defending Faheem Ansari in the 26/11 case that he was shot dead in his office in 2010.
“It was quite emotional to see him on screen. We wanted people to know him,his story and we are happy the way the film has come out. Almost 95 per cent of the film is accurate,” Shahid’s brother Khalid told PTI.
“People should be aware of the work he did. His spirit to help the poor and the needy who get falsely implicated on the wrong side of the law (must be known),” Khalid said. The film has a scene in which Shahid’s face is blackened by assailants outside the court room.
“This is the remaining five percent where the filmmaker has taken the liberty to add things. But we all family members are with Hansal Mehta (director) as we are happy with the fact that there is someone who is telling the story of my brother through this medium (film),” Khalid said.
Shahid’s seven-year-long legal career was all about securing justice for the poor and those who were framed.
“I shared a very good bonding with him. He was like a close friend to me… I used to share everything with him. He was there by my side as a friend,as a tutor,” Khalid said.
The film features Rajkumar Yadav of ‘Kai Po Che’ fame as Shahid and releases on October 18.
“He has given his best and has done a good job. He has given 100 per cent to the film and made every bit of it look real,” Khalid said.
Khalid himself is a lawyer and now he sits on the very chair on which his brother’s life was cut short.
Ask him about the ongoing trial,he says,I don’t want to get into it as the matter is still in court. It is said justice will be done but it will take time.