If the name of this film piques your interest, wait till you've gone through the star cast. Jai Ho Democracy boasts of a string of veteran actors -- from Om Puri to Annu Kapoor, Seema Biswas, Adil Hussain and Satish Kaushik. And all of them helmed by Ranjit Kapoor, who co-wrote the screenplay of Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro with Kundan Shah, Sudhir Mishra and Satish Kaushik. And like the 1983 cult classic, JHD too takes a dig at the existing social and political morass India is staring at currently.
The film's trailer, released on Wednesday (March 18), gives a sneak peek into its plot: It is about the murky world of India's political class, where ministers and leaders procrastinate over everything, even on something as grave as border security. Jai Ho Democracy also takes a satirical look at the media's desperation to stay ahead in the TRP game, sensationalising even the most trivial situation without any qualms.
Ranjit Kapoor, whose last directorial venture was Chintuji (2009) feels he couldn't have timed the film's release any better. "Politics is no longer a taboo topic for Indians. The young especially are taking a lot of interest in what is going on behind the closed doors and under the official tables. We have tried to show the true picture, our tongues firmly in cheek," Kapoor said at the trailer launch.
Jai Ho Democracy has Om Puri playing Pandeyji, a right-wing heavyweight who has weaved his way through the ranks the hard way to become a top post-Independence politician. "Pandeyji is familiar to everyone but also not stereotypical. His motivations and his actions are very identifiable and also very funny," said Om Puri.
Annu Kapoor plays PRO Ramalingam, a former Chief Justice of India, who has always been close to the government in power, forever ready to accept whatever favours are doled out to him. "It was fun playing a character we have all heard and known of but not seen up close in action. Ramalingam knows the truth but also knows when to lie," Annu Kapoor said.
Adil Hussain plays Major Baruah, a disabled war veteran who switched from army to politics riding on the wave of sympathies coming his way and now an important opposition figure. Talking about the film, Adil said, "Major Baruah might remind you of certain figures from Indian political history but it's also a work of fiction and hence the similarities are as they say just co-incidental."
The female character, Seema Biswas plays social activist Ashima Roy who has made a career out of her "social activities". "Haven't we seen the Ashimas around us and laughed at them secretly? Well, now you can laugh at Ashima openly and endlessly," says Biswas.
Of the other major characters, Satish Kaushik plays the Minister of State for Defence Harphool Choudhry, a product of coalition politics and who is forever in and out of Tihar jail on corruption charges. Aamir Bashir is Bashir Baig, the son of an ex-minister from Jammu and Kashmir who is the emerging face of Indian politics. And Rajni Gujral plays Mrs Bedi, a seasoned journalist who has made her way to the position of editor-in-chief of a prominent regional newspaper.
Jai Ho Democracy will hit theatres on 24th April, 2015.