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Paramvir  Chakra Winner Vikram  Batra’s Twin Brother  Vishal Batra Speaks On Shershaah The Bio-pic On Vikram



Vishal, it  was important  for me to  speak to you  as Shershaah is on release.

I think it was   important  for my brother’s story to be told.

Losing  a  twin brother to the nation, how  the hell  does one  deal with that?

It’s been very very painful. The void is  permanent. Vikram  was  not just my brother. He was  my best friend best brother  and  confidante. We dreamt  of joining the armed forces together. But I couldn’t qualify.  We shared  our lives with each other till we were 24. We were  very very close.The pain is forever. But I’ve no choice  but to put up a brave face  in public.

With  pain  there is  a sense  of pride at what your brother achieved?

I think he  has immortalized  himself.What he  achieved  shall remain forever.It is really a very mixed emotion for me. For the country Vikram is Shershaah. For me he’s  the  brother and friend I  lost so early.  It is a like  part of  me has been  amputated.

What were  your emotions on seeing the  film?

I have to say it is not easy watching his  story  being recreated. Not a day has passed  since his  going away 22 years when we in our family  don’t remember him. To talk about him is still  very very painful. The pain  cannot be described.Reliving the memory of his loss  every day is not easy.

I think we need to tell stories  such as Vikram’s  and not  make  bio-pics on gangsters?

I am absolutely with   you on  this. Shershaah is not only about Vikram. It is  a homage  to all  the  brave  soldiers who lay down their  lives for our country.A majority  of  us don’t know what it means  to  lose a son  or brother at  the battle front. A  film like Shershaah  brings  to life the sacrifices made by  our  soldiers  and their families.We  should  have many  more films  on  our soldiers.

What do you  think of Sidharth Malhotra  playing your brother Vikram?

I believe he has  put in a  lot of hard work  to understand Vikram as  a character  and  to play him as honestly as possible.And for him to go to Kargil and shoot there at a height of 2,000 feet   …this is  not an easy  task for  a civilian. Of course it is not the same as what our soldiers faced 22 years ago when they  fought the war. But for Sidharth  to go down to Kargil and relive what  our soldiers did , couldn’t have been easy.I have to give it to him. He’s done a good job. I keep reading how much my brother’s story inspired  Sidharth. I hope it inspires other youngsters  as well to join the army.

Did  Sidharth  meet  you and your family  to understand Vikram?

Oh yes, he  met us many times to understand Vikram as a son, a brother and a soldier. He met Mom and Dad. He  met our sisters and a lot  of  Vikram’s comrades. He tried  to get into the skin of my brother’s character.I think Sidharth  instinctively  understood  the gravity of his responsibility.  He  couldn’t afford to  slip up.  Not when  he was portraying someone who means  so much to the country.

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