Kirti Kulhari
Shaheen Parkar (MID-DAY; April 10, 2017)

She always knew Pink would get her noticed. After critical acclaim, the multi-starrer headlined by Amitabh Bachchan bagged a National Award (Best Film on Social Issues). “The feeling that leaves me most satisfied is that I can be part of good stories as I am suddenly bigger than I was. l got another chance with Pink,” says Kirti as she prepares to dub for Madhur Bhandarkar’s Indu Sarkar based on late Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s declaration of Emergency in the country from 1975-77.

Kirti plays the title role in the political drama. The title is a play on words — Indira’s nickname was Indu while Sarkar refers to government. “There may be that link,” muses Kirti, “But my character is called Indu because my father is shown as a fan of Indira Gandhi. The surname Sarkar comes as my character marries a Bengali guy (played by Tota Roy Chaudhary).”

Kirti plays a speech impaired poetess. “She doesn’t have a voice, but finds one through poetry. During Emergency, the voice of the common man was suppressed, so she jots down thoughts on her voyage of self- discovery.”

Considered the most controversial years of independent India, the mid '70s saw most of Gandhi’s political opponents being imprisoned, the press censored and several cases of human rights violations. “Since Emergency serves as the backdrop, the film draws as much from the incidents of that period.”

Kirti read veteran journalist Kuldip Nayar’s book, Emergency Retold, for her prep. The film is in post-production and will release in July. “There were plans to shoot in Delhi, but we ended up doing it entirely at ND Studios, Karjat. It was difficult to recreate Delhi of that era in the midst of what the capital is today.”