Two brothers, one older than the other by five years, live in a school hostel away from their parents. The younger brother, a Classs 6 student, would rather eat golgappas and play kites than study. The elder, in Class 9, is conscientious and keeps the younger boy on a tight leash.
When the results of the final examination are declared, it is revealed that while the little boy has topped the class, his brother has failed. The next academic year passes like the earlier one — the little brother enjoys flying kites and hurling stones at fruit trees while the older boy spends time reading. Another exam and the results are no different than the previous one; there is now only one class separating the brothers. The younger boy now fears his elder brother a little less. “He cannot scold me now for playing,” he thinks.
When the two meet again, the older boy is furious that his brother has been out flying kites. “If you thought I would stop shouting at you because there is just one class separating us, you are wrong,” the older boy says. “Even I like flying kites, but I could not because I had to pretend to be a role model for you.” It is a moment of sobriety for the younger boy.
Bade Bhaisahab, an adaptation of Munshi Premchand’s short story of the same name, was presented by the group Performers at the Hindustan Times Kala Ghoda Arts Festival on Thursday. In the last ten years, Performers, which is part of the Ekjute theatre group, has done about 150 shows based on Premchand’s stories. “Bade Bhaisahab’s script is largely based on Premchand’s original writing but we added some contemporary lines to support the screenplay,” said Santosh Tiwari, the play’s director.