The Gandhi Interview by Ahmed Sidhique

Ahmed imagines an interview he does with Mahatma Gandhi, purely based on what he has read on the Father of the Nation

A few minutes before midnight on October 2, Ahmed Sidhique clicks post on his Facebook, and a new note appears on his wall. It begins with a black picture at the top, that has the title: ‘The MKGandhi Interview’ by Ahmed Sidhique, a design by his friend Binu Narayan. In the right is an outline of Gandhi, his back turned. And below is the interview, that Ahmed imagines he does with Mahatma Gandhi, purely based on what he has read on the Father of the Nation. There is no apprehension as he posts the post he has taken a good part of last year to finish. He has done a lot of reading, taken notes, checked and double checked facts. And if anyone comes to him with proof it’s wrong, he will be glad to correct it. Not so likely, given the time and research Ahmed has given to this project. Something he felt can keep his mind going while he writes his next screenplay, his third after Mrityunjayam in Kerala Cafe, and Gangster.

The Gandhi Project began only an October ago, but the idea must have set in a lot before. Ahmed used to run a defence forum with a few friends before he came into movies. “I met a multitude of people who used to get on the forum and vent their views on freedom fighters and some hated Gandhi with vengeance and blamed him for everything wrong with India at times. I never got into the Gandhi debate because I usually keep shut if I don’t know much about something someone else is talking about. What made me get to reading Gandhi was of late there is a tendency amongst many people to undermine his contributions and make it seem like he took credit for the freedom movement.” He had already read Gandhi’s autobiography. And went on to read Rajmohan’s biography, Tolstoy’s A letter to a Hindoo and ‘lots and lots of articles’.

“You can say it’s all the negative comments about him which made me read about him.” The answers are all taken from the books he has read, and reflects Gandhi’s views.

Coincidentally, there is a question on beef, which just happened to be there, for Ahmed had no idea there would be a lynching in the name of beef at the same time he published his post. While Gandhi advocates giving up beef in the fictional interview, he answers Ahmed question on beef ban with “If a Hindu tries to stop the slaughter of a cow by killing someone slaughtering a cow, then it’s his stupidity to think that a cow’s life is worth more than a human’s life.”

The Gandhi interview doesn’t end here, he has more episodes to post. And he also has other historical figures he wants to study more of, like Hitler. “This is an ongoing project. I was actually talking with Murali Gopy and he loved the piece. He suggested I make it into a book, a collection. I am thinking about it.”

Ahmed the actor however seems reluctant. He was last seen in KL10 and You Too Brutus. “I am thinking I should write. I am pretty bad at multitasking and I am not that talented to juggle movies,” says the modest man, least realising the fans are not going to let him get away with that.

( Source : deccan chronicle )
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