“Yeh mera desh, mera watan, yeh mera ghar, mera chaman, sabka vikas chahta hoon, chahta hoom aman … haan main bhi chowkidaar hoon” the song is juxtaposed by visuals of the tricolour and Prime Minister Narendra Modi…writes Amita Verma
A number of government welfare schemes like Ujjwala find mention in these five-minute documentaries that also talk about border security and creation of a new India.
“Main Bhi Chowkidaar” films — and there are about a dozen of them — are now a part of the Bharatiya Janata Party campaign in the interiors of Uttar Pradesh.
These films have been commissioned mainly by the BJP but as well as by some individual candidates.
“Some candidates who are contesting in eastern Uttar Pradesh have got promotional films made in Bhojpuri dialect and are being forwarded on WhatsApp. With technology now available on your phone, there is no need to show these films on LED screens now,” said R.K. Agarwal, who manufactures and sells election memorabilia.
Agarwal said that most of the visuals have been taken from BJP’s official campaign films while some have been “borrowed” form the internet.
“The cost of these films ranges from Rs 3 lakh to Rs 15 lakh, depending on the quality and production costs,” he said.
In some of the films, relevant dialogues spoken by famous actors have been incorporated. There is late actor-politician Vinod Khanna clad in a police inspector’s uniform saying: “Main kisi chor ko apne ilakey mein rehne nahin doonga.”
In another scene, there is Nirupa Roy saying “Mere bete ko naukri dekar apne hum par bada ehsaan kiya hai” and then Prime Minister Modi’s visual floats across the screen.
BJP MP K.P. Singh from Jaunpur, whose ticket is yet to be finalised, said that he has already started his campaign with short films in Bhojpuri.
“These films are getting very popular and children can be heard singing ‘Main bhi chowkidar’ in the villages which explains the popularity of the party and the campaign. The anthem is even playing in local transport,” he said.