Shaheed (transl. Martyr ) is a 1965 patriotic film directed by S. Ram Sharma, produced by Kewal Kashyap and starring Manoj Kumar, Kamini Kaushal and Pran in lead roles. Iftekhar, Nirupa Roy, Prem Chopra, Madan Puri and Anwar Hussain star in supporting roles. It is based on the life of Bhagat Singh. The music was composed by Prem Dhawan, with several songs being penned by freedom fighter Ram Prasad Bismil. Shaheed was the first of Manoj Kumar's series of patriotic films, followed by the likes of Upkar (1967), Purab Aur Paschim (1970) and Kranti (1981).
It was released on 1 January 1965 and became a box office success. The eleventh highest-grossing film of the year, it was given a verdict of "hit" by Box office India. At the 13th National Film Awards, Shaheed won the award for Best Feature Film in Hindi, the Nargis Dutt Award for Best Feature Film on National Integration and the award for Best Screenplay for B. K. Dutt and Din Dayal Sharma.
The film was screened retrospectively on 15 August 2016 at the Independence Day Film Festival, jointly presented by the Indian Directorate of Film Festivals and Ministry of Defense, commemorating 70th Indian Independence Day.
It is the year 1911 in British India, Sardar Kishan Singh and his family, including son Bhagat, are distressed when Kishan's brother, Ajit Singh, is arrested for agitating people against the British. He then mysteriously disappears after supposedly escaping from prison and is never heard from again. This makes a strong impression on young Bhagat Singh's mind. When he grows up, he joins the movement for freedom struggle headed by Chandrashekar Azad. In 1928, he sees that Lala Lajpat Rai is lathi-charged by the police for leading a protest march against Simon Commission and later succumbs to his injuries. Bhagat, Chandrashekar Azad, Rajguru, Sukhdev, and Jaigopal decide to avenge this by killing the Assistant Superintendent J. P. Saunders. In December, they shot him dead as he was leaving a local police station. After the assassination, Bhagat and others decide to leave Lahore to avoid being arrested by CID or police. Bhagat changes his appearance to an Anglo-Indian gentlemen and evades Lahore along with Azad and Rajguru.
4 months later, Bhagat Singh and comrade Batukeshwar Dutt explode a bomb in the Central Legislative Assembly in Delhi as an act of protest. Together with other freedom fighters, including Bhagat's best friend Sukhdev, they are arrested and prosecuted, then thrown in prison. They are detained in the jail at Lahore, where they are continually persecuted and tortured by the prison guards.
After seeing the maltreatment of Indian prisoners, Bhagat and his fellow freedom fighters announce a hunger strike, during which Jatindranath dies. The government gives in and agrees to change the way prisoners are treated. As the case in the killing of Saunders continues, Bhagat and his comrades give poignant speeches in the court condemning British imperialism. Chandrashekhar Azad and Bhagwati Charan Vohra try to help the freedom fighters escape, but the attempt fails, and Bhagwati dies in the process. Chandrashekhar Azad subsequently kills himself (he vowed to never be captured alive) during his encounter with the British police in Alfred Park.
When the trial ends, Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev are all given death sentences. Fearing public protests, the British secretly send Bhagat Singh and Rajguru to the gallows a day before they are officially supposed to be executed. The men shout: "Long live the Revolution!" just before they are executed.
Music: Prem Dhawan, Lyricist: Prem Dhawan (except Sarfaroshi ki Tamanna by Bismil Azimabadi)
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