R Narayana Murthy's attack on the bourgeoisie government was never so sharp.
In this film, he takes on the State Government headed by Phanibhushana Rao, which
is apparently arm twisted by the World Bank to pursue an economy that hits the
poor hardest. And the parallels to the present government are all too obvious.
Even if you are a novice in politics, you wouldn't miss the point that being driven
What have the World Bank conditionalities got to do with the steep hike in the electricity prices, the commercialization of education, the cut in the subsidies or the privatization and closure of public sector enterprises, you might ask. Forgetting about the fact that the State government went with a begging bowl to the World Bank for a loan to tide over the economic crisis, the film focuses only on the second part: the conditionalities attached to it. Instead of laying bare the truth, Narayana Murthy takes a one-sided Marxist view when the people, especially the poor, are hit by the impact of the conditionalities.
So what we see is a Chief Minister Phanibhushana Rao, who is also the minister of education, conspiring with the World Bank chairman for a loan and willing to do anything to get the loan. In one go, public sector enterprises are privatized, education is commercialized, power bills, as you know, have been hiked like never before, while the word 'subsidies' has become anathema to the politicians.
In this scenario, the marginalized poor, especially youth with no means to continue their livelihood, take to crime, aided and abetted by the bourgeoisie class. A heartbroken Narayana Murthy tells them that they do not need to suffer, and whips up a revolution to storm the assembly to redress their grievances. And finally, teaches the leaders a lesson.
It is a film that would make an educated man laugh at the very idea of dividing
the society into haves and have-nots. For, the Marxist paradigm has become redundant
with the large presence of a middle class in the Indian society. The lower class
is becoming the middle class, the middle class the upper middle class and so on.
So Narayana Murthy's paradigm does not cut much ice with the people. But the lower
sections of the society are moved by his talk, and there are whistles and catcalls
whenever he lobs verbal missiles on the administrators.