LAHORE, Pakistan: KopyKats Productions and Anwar Maqsood have teamed up once again very successfully, and the outcome is a tragi-comic play about the India-Pakistan argument in Siachen.
The underlying message of the play is the futility of war, but the grim message is coated with Maqsood’s sharp wit, making his sarcasm all the more poignant.
Mr. Anwar Masood said “Siachen revolved around the lives of soldiers who gave up so much in life to protect their motherland”.
There is a sense of doom in the opening scenes as the stage is enveloped in darkness, except for the spotlight that focuses on different soldiers scenes with their respective families. There are flashbacks throughout the play, as the soldiers communicate with their families through letters. A mother, having already lost two sons in similar circumstances, is shown sending her third son to the war.
When the scene opens against the backdrop of the snow-covered mountain at 20,000 feet (More than 2000 people have died in this inhospitable terrain, mostly due to weather extremes and the natural hazards of mountain warfare), the soldiers are bantering with the unseen enemy through witty humor about cricket.
The role of the Bihari soldier, adds humor to the play with a great deal of sensitivity. Speaking in Bihari, the Indian soldier comes across as just another human being, only concerned with saving his life. The pathos of this scene is interspersed with gems of Maqsood’s inimitable humour: when asked who the Prime Minister of Pakistan is, the Indian soldier answers, “Mian Muhammad Raheel Shareef”.
There is a dig at the western media too, as the BBC correspondent arrives at the post; her presence distracts the soldiers, compromising their security.
Directed by Dawar Mehmood, the cast of play includes Sajeel, Hajra, Umar, Taha, Sekandar, Zain, Saad, Tanveer, Hassan, Abiola, Mohsin, Nousheen, Sumaya, Ahmad and Hammad.
About Siachen Conflict:
The Siachen Conflict, sometimes referred to as the Siachen War, is a military conflict between India and Pakistan over the disputed Siachen Glacier region in Kashmir. A cease-fire went into effect in 2003.