Director: Ketan Mehta
Writer: Shahzad Ahmad (research and dialogue), Rajbali Anjum (script consultant), Jakhar Mahendar (screenplay), Ketan Mehta (screenplay), Deepak Ramola (lyricist), Shaiwal (dialogue consultant), Varadraj Swami (research and dialogue)
Stars: Ajay Aarya, Ashutosh Acharya, Shahzad Ahmad, Radhika Apte
Runtime: 120 min
Released: 21 August 2015
Synopsis: Dashrath Manjhi was a poor man from the lowest of the low castes, living in a remote village cut off from the world by a rocky mountain range. Life for him was a daily struggle for survival. He loved his wife, Phaguniya, beyond belief. One day, while climbing the mountain to bring him food, his wife slipped, fell and died. Overwhelmed by grief, Dashrath decided to carve out a path through the mountain, so that no one else would suffer his fate. For 22 years, all by himself, with just a hammer and a chisel, he hammered away at the rocks, till the path was carved out from the mountain.
In the 1960s Dashrath Manjhi (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) lived in a small village Gehlaur near Gaya, Bihar, India with his family including his wife Phaguniya Devi (Radhika Apte). There was a rocky mountain near his village that people either had to climb across or travel round to gain access to medical care at the nearest town Wazirganj. One day Manjhi’s wife fell while trying to cross the mountain, after which Manjhi decided to carve a road through it. When he started hammering the hill people called him a lunatic but that only steeled his resolve further. After 22 years of back-breaking labour, Manjhi carved a path 360 feet long, 25 feet deep in places and 30 feet wide.
Manjhi died in 2007. The film’s postscript states that 52 years after he started breaking the mountain, 30 years after he finished and 4 years after his death the government finally made a metalled road to Gehlaur in 2011.
Nawazuddin Siddiqui enacted the role of Dashrath Manjhi, while Radhika Apte played Manjhi’s wife. The film was released worldwide on 21 August 2015. Prior to its release preview copy of movie leaked on web on 10 August 2015. The Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC) cyber police station had registered a case against a few unknown persons for leaking the movie. The Bihar State Government declared the film tax-free on 30 July 2015.
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