This tale of crime and corruption will make your blood run cold

Raktanchal, the new crime thriller streaming on MX Player, will transport you to the dark world of eastern UP’s thekedari and its gang wars.
Kranti Prakash Jha (left) and Nikitin Dheer in Raktanchal.(MX Player)
Kranti Prakash Jha (left) and Nikitin Dheer in Raktanchal.(MX Player)
Updated on Jun 02, 2020 01:51 PM IST
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ByPromotional Feature, HT Brand Studio

This true story of gang wars and turf rivalry is not for the weak-hearted. Raktanchal is set in the badlands of Uttar Pradesh in the 1980s, when goons and guns ruled the roost and all development work in the state was given out through a well-oiled system of pre-set tenders, in exchange for favours between politicians and the underworld.

The crime drama brings to life the rivalry between Waseem Khan (enacted by Nikitin Dheer) who is introduced as the king of the tender mafia of UP’s Purvanchal belt, and the young criminal Vijay Singh (Kranti Prakash Jha).

Watch the trailer below.


Khan’s turf is being challenged by Singh, who wants to settle scores with him for his father’s brutal killing by taking over his domain. In the process, many feathers are ruffled and the city of Purvanchal is shaken by a bloody turn of events.

Here are five reasons that make it a must-watch.

Unpredictable and fast-paced plot

Watching Raktanchal is a nail-biting experience that will keep you wondering “what’s next?” (MX Player)
Watching Raktanchal is a nail-biting experience that will keep you wondering “what’s next?” (MX Player)

The plot has its twists and turns, but what keeps you hooked to it is the unpredictability of the events that unfold episode after episode. The story moves fast and new characters are introduced in almost every episode. Watching Raktanchal is a nail-biting experience that will keep you wondering “what’s next?”

Local flavour

When you watch Raktanchal, you travel back in time to the UP of 1980s, where a state of lawlessness was all pervasive. The costumes, locations, and use of colloquial language do full justice to the plot. This was an era that a lot of us have heard about, and Raktanchal brilliantly portrays the underworld equations in India’s Hindi heartland of that time.

Strong performances

Ronjini Chakraborty, as Seema. (MX Player)
Ronjini Chakraborty, as Seema. (MX Player)

The clash for tenders sparks off gang rivalries and revenge killings as the main protagonists vie for the top spot. The actors play their parts with intensity. Jha, for instance, gets into the skin of Vijay Singh’s character beautifully – from being a bright student preparing for the civil services examination to a dreaded gangster. Dheer, too, plays a convincing Waseem Khan as the broad-chested goon who holds the reins of Purvanchal. The character of the sole woman in the drama, Seema, is played by Ronjini Chakraborty.

Of crime, corruption, and power

The story shows the camaraderie between gangster Waseem Khan and minister Pujari Singh (played by Ravi Khanvilkar), who control all the government tenders, as well as the liquor distribution and coal mines in the area for “favours”. The plot offers an insight into the working of this well-oiled machinery, where corrupt politicians and goons join hands to get access to government contracts and leach the system. Singh plays a civil servant whose father becomes a victim to one of the gangsters. This triggers his ‘bad’ side, as he quits his government job to avenge his father’s death by destroying Khan.

Musical relief

Raktanchal features a few songs, not commonly seen in OTT content. The songs also offer a much-needed respite from the action-packed sequences.

The first season of Raktanchal is streaming on MX Player for free. So, what are you waiting for? Make the most of your lockdown time!

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