Sunday 3 August 2014

The making of Bahadur - Tidbits from the Indrajal Universe

Hey hey hey Barbarians,
there are points in the timeline of every publication which becomes a defining moment for them, etching their contribution forever.
Issue #267 in Indrajal comics timeline was also such a defining moment in which the character of 'Bahadur' was introduced to the readers.

By far and large there were no colloquial or if i may say so an Indian hero before him in circulation. Bahadur rose quickly among readers and achieved a cult status.
Bahadur also connected a chord with Indians because of other social realities before us , It was a time of struggle between old ethos and new realities spilling the underbelly of discontent.
Bahadur represented a picture of a young Indian who was angry,discontented and wanted vengeance.Whether he gets engulfed in his own fire or he becomes the spark of change is what the book is all about.Released in 1976 just after the phenomenal success of 'Sholay' on the silver screen written by Abid surti and drawn by B.Govind. Both were hugely successful in depicting visuals akin to cinematic angles with a good pace in the story.
The story revolves around a village which is on the cross hairs of the dangerous dacoit gangs of Chambal*,and in the village lies the red bricks house of Bahadur,whose father was an aide of the dacoit gangs.However he gets killed by Inspector Vishal during a raid,left behind with young vengeance seeking Bahadur and his old mother.
In respective raids on the village the Red Bricks house never gets targeted as being identified by the gangs as an old ally.

This is also a reason why the villagers do not trust Bahadur. The indifference of the villagers combined with the constant reminder of losing his father makes him a bitter man.
Bahadur decides on killing inspector Vishal who is posted in another station of a different village,but fate had it's own plans Inspector Vishal seeks out Bahadur after getting a tip-off from the villagers.

He lands in Bahadur's house bound by the Indian ritual of "thou shall not kill thy guest" Bahadur is forced to listen to him.
Inspector Vishal bursts the bubble of Bahadur's father beings a la' robin-hood and takes him to seek the truth for himself.

Bahadur realizes his bitter ways and vows to amend the wrongs by forming a citizen security force but gets ignored due to the trust deficit between him and the villagers.
Meanwhile Shamsher singh raids the village and Bahadur's mother gets hit by Sahmasher singh's bullet and she confesses to the truth of Bahadur's father before dying,Bahadur vows to eradicate dacoits and their ilk.

A desperate encounter follows between Bahadur and Shamsher Singh's goons in which he outwits them and becomes a hero in the eyes of the villagers.He refrains from killing Shamsher Singh and hands them over to Inspector Vishal,Inspector Vishal helps Bahadur in getting the bounty of Shamsher Singh's capture with which Bahadur forms the Famous 'Citizens Security Force'and the rest as they say is History!

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