Chronicle Reporter, Bhopal
Play titled ‘Manto Khud’ was staged on the second day of 5- day 17th Rang Alaap National Theatre Festival on Saturday at Shaheed Bhavan. The play was directed by Preeti Jha and was based on the stories written by Sadat Hasan Manto, namely, License, Aankhein and Khuda Ki Kasam. The dramatistion of the play was done by Tanaji Rao Bawade.
The entire play was enacted by two artists including Preeti Jha herself playing the lead character, and 15 artists who were in the chorus. Around 15 scenes were included in the play with live music.
The play was presented by The Rising Society of Art and Culture.
The director took around 2 months to prepare the entire play, right from the script to framing the play. Preeti Jha has taken some of the scenes and characters’ name from the story of Aankhein and Khuda Ki Kasam to dramatize the complete story.
The story of the play begins with the male protagonist, Abbu Kochwan, meeting the female protagonist, Inaayat and falling in love. Abbu Kochwan rides a bullock cart owned by him entirely.
He promises Inaayat that he will leave everything if she agrees to marry him. Inaayat eventually marries him. But Inaayat is under age and due to this,her father put Abbu behind the bars. Abbu falls ill and becomes a heart patient in the jail that leads to his death.
Abbu had asked Inaayat to let Dina ride his bullock cart after he dies. But after the death of Abbu, Inaayat is approached by Dina to marry him with an intention to get Abbu’s bullock cart as well. But she defies marrying him.
Similarly, Inaayat is approached by two more men but she turns down proposals of everyone. One fine day, she decides to ride the bullock cart by herself, but she is unaware of the fact that, she needs a license to drive the cart.
Therefore, she reaches the office to get the license, but the officials tell her that she can’t get the license because women are not meant to ride a cart or work but to sell their bodies to survive.
The play ended on an abrupt note which left the audience in between the whirl of their own thoughts. The theme of the play was to question the common mass that are women really meant to become the objects of pleasure for men?