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Power of love

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By Mithun to play Hason Raja with Raima Sen as his muse KUSHALI NAG
  • Published 12.02.11

After Lalan Fakir, here comes another mystic poet from Bangladesh — Hason Raja. If Goutam Ghose got Prosenjit to bring alive Lalan Fakir on celluloid, UK-based director Ruhul Amin has turned to Mithun Chakraborty to breathe life into Hason Raja.

Hason Raja, to be shot entirely in Bangladesh, goes on the floors on February 22. Raima Sen plays Hason Raja’s muse Dilaram (meaning one who brings comfort to the heart, says Amin).

“Hason Raja was a poet from Bangladesh’s Sylhet district, who died about 160 years ago. I have been trying to make the film for the past eight years but couldn’t find a producer. I had met Mithunda about four years back and Raima about three years back. Both of them were interested in the film but it took me a while to put the finances in place. Finally, my friends and the Bangladeshi community in England have come forward to fund the film together. The budget is about Rs 5 crore,” said the London-based 40-year-old Amin, who left Bangladesh during his teens. He has made more than 15 documentaries and feature films for BBC.

Amin says Goutam Ghose’s Moner Manush has bowled him over but there’s no resemblance between it and his film.

Moner Manush is about a fakir, Hason Raja is about a king. Hason Raja was a flamboyant, ruthless zamindar from Sylhet who fell in love with Dilaram, after which he became a transformed man. He became a poet, singing songs and wandering all across Bangladesh. Sufism, Buddhism and Hinduism have influenced his songs. Rabindranath Tagore had mentioned him in several conferences worldwide. The film is a biopic but I am capturing only a part of Hason Raja’s life, from age 40 to the time of his death,” says Amin, who has drawn from the research of university professors in Bangladesh on Hason Raja to write the script.

“Mithunda will play the 40-year-old Hason Raja. His physical features and height match with Hason Raja, who was tall and well-built.... I’ve had many sessions with Mithunda in Bombay and Coimbatore. He is very excited about the project. I met Raima through UK-based film director Sangeeta Datta. I have seen Raima’s performance in Chokher Bali and she fits the bill as Dilaram,” adds the filmmaker, currently in Bangladesh scouting locations.

Amin has already recorded six songs for the film. Bappi Lahiri is the music director; Shaan, Alka Yagnik, Abhijeet and Kavita Krishnamurthy have done the playback.