After proving his acting prowess with Woodstock Villa, Sikander Kher's next film Summer of 2007 made on the theme of agrarian crisis faced by rural India, will be released this Friday.
The crisis, especially in the Vidharbha region of Maharashtra has led thousands of farmers to commit suicide in the last 10 years.
"The story is of five students of medical college who live in a world of their own until they land in a village in Vidarbha. The film aims at portraying the difficulties faced by these poor villages," says Suhail Tatari, director of the film.
"The village is caught in the whirlpool of extreme poverty and farmer's suicides. The five friends suddenly are confronted with an India they have never really heard of or seen. They undergo a process of self-realisation and reform only for the betterment of their lives," he adds.
While saying that the movie has an unusual theme and storyline, he adds, "It is a regular Bollywood stuff but not a masala movie. The film is about a sensitive issue, the country is facing for quite some time. I do not want to make any point but want audience to watch a good movie."
Suhail Tahari, who makes his debut as a director with the movie, says box office success does matter to him but he never tried to add anything which was not relevant to the film.
"The film focuses on how money lenders exploit the hapless farmers and also explores the possibility of micro credit as a possible non violent solution to the problems of the farmers. Our research shows the existence of micro credit in the regions of Vidarbha - though used within small intimate groups," he adds.
"Sikandar Kher, Arjan Baweja, Gul Panag, Divya Dutta and Yuvika Chowdhary play the lead roles in the movie while the supporting roles are played by Ashutosh Rana, Sachin Khedekar, Vikram Gokhle and Prashant Narayan. It was supposed to be Sikander's first film but somehow it got delayed," he says.
When asked about the controversy the movie can create after its release, he says, "I have made the film not for any political purpose but if farmer's are benefited and youngsters watching the film in multiplexes begin thinking about a change, its worth it.
"If at the end of the film, audience asks questions to themselves like why is India's progress so lopsided? or why is there such income disparity in the new India where there are 36 billionaires and some 800 million people live on less than 20 rupees a day?, my goal would be achieved, says the director.