Writer-Director Abhishek Chaubey’s ‘Udta Punjab’ minces no words about a fact that the state’s netas have been anxious to keep under wraps for years now. Punjab is facing a serious drug epidemic; common sense suggests it is impossible for so many addictive substances to be so easily available to so many people, without the cooperation of the police and the political class.
The issue is not exclusive to Punjab,” says director Aparnaa Singh, whose upcoming earliest venture, “Irada”, puts the spotlight on the consequences of reverse boring and pierce in the figure of cancer cases in Punjab due to water contamination. The Naseeruddin and Arshad Warsi –starrer us the second huge banner film, after Abhishek Chaubey’s 2016 drugs-drama, Udta Punjab, to reveal the wrongdoings in the Northern state. While the controversy affects the country as a whole. She backs her decision to choose Punjab as the backdrop of her film. “The position is cynical. Yes, this is a pan-India issue but Punjab was the state that kicked off the Green Revolution”.
The eco-suspense highlights the conduct in which several generations have lost their lives due to the government’s insensitivity. She further informs with concern, “It is a terrorism of type. For profuse years, contamination of all kind has been kept under wraps. In Punjab, the Green Revolution backfired due to personal greed. Good intentions were lost in the face of corruption, which resulted in the creation of a cancer belt. While in Punjab for a recce, we merge with farmers and doctors, who highlighted that 1,332 types of dangerous wastes are brutally disposed. The rate of cancer in the state is growing, with Bhatinda the worst-hit.”
Punjab is home to 29% of all those who inject heroin in South Asia, according to a report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime published last year. “Punjab’s drugs issue problem is getting more and more conspicuous,” said Dr. Rajinder Singh, a psychiatrist who runs Akal, a drug de-addiction and rehab center in a rural district of the state. Dr. Singh said he has treated more than 4,500 patients since the center opened, 12 years ago.
With a state election in Punjab enrolled in just few days, the combat quickly spilled over into politics. Both Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party oppose PM Narendra Modi and its local ally, the Shiromani Akali Dal – Bharatiya, which control Punjab’s government.
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