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Monday, September 20, 2021

As Shershaah trailer drops, here’s the real story of Captain Vikram Batra

Vikram Batra was a celebrated Indian army officer who gave his life while fighting for the country during the 1999 Kargil War at just 24. Shershaah is based on his life with Sidharth Malhotra playing his role.

By: Entertainment Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: July 26, 2021 9:10:07 am
vikram batra, Shershaah, sidharth malhotraShershaah will release on August 12 on Amazon Prime Video. (Photo: Dharma Productions)

In Vishnuvardhan’s war biopic called Shershaah, Sidharth Malhotra takes on the role of Captain Vikram Batra, a celebrated Indian army officer who gave his life while fighting for the country during the 1999 Kargil War at just 24. The title of the film refers to Batra’s nickname.

The film also stars Kiara Advani as Dimple Cheema, Captain Batra’s fiancee who never married after he was martyred.

Shershaah’s trailer released on Sunday leaving fans remembering the man on whom the movie is based. Born in the hill town of Palampur in Himachal Pradesh, Batra was the elder of twins and also had two sisters. After his schooling, he took admission in Chandigarh’s DAV College and post-graduated from Panjab University. He eventually joined Dehradun’s Indian Military Academy, an institute that trains officers for Indian Army in 1996, and graduated in December 1997.

Vikram Batra’s military career began after he was Commissioned into the 13th battalion of Jammu and Kashmir Rifles. And it was this regiment with whom Batra joined the Kargil War, in which Pakistani troops, disguised as native militants, infiltrated the Indian position along LOC.

During the conflict, Captain Batra distinguished himself for his bravery and skill. He gunned down four Pakistani soldiers and died while saving his comrade who was injured. As he was trying to drag the soldier to safety by deliberately exposing himself to enemy fire, he was shot in the chest and a splinter of an RPG warhead hit him in the head.

For his service and acts of valour, he was awarded with the Param Vir Chakra, India’s highest military decoration.

Pepsi’s ad slogan from late 1990s — ‘Yeh Dil Maange More’ — is often associated with Batra. It was the code word of Vikram Batra to report about his success to his commanders through radio message from point 5140 near Tololing.

Hindi cinema does not have a good track record with military movies, which nearly always devolve into 2-3 hour displays of jingoism that glorify war. Let’s hope Shershaah is an exception.

Bankrolled by Dharma Productions and Kaash Entertainment, Shershaah releases on August 12 on Amazon Prime Video.

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