Phir Subah Hogi (1958)
(Certified: Nov 27, 1958)
Dostoevskys story provides the only the bare outlines of this emotional plea for social justice in Nehruite India by an influentia film-maker of the genre (of Railway Platform, 1955). Ramu (Kapoor) is a poor law student in love with the even poorer Sohni (Sinha). Sohnis father (Palsikar) is an alocholic tailor in debt to the villanious Harbanslal who demands to marry Sohni. Ramu must pay off the villain if he is to win Sohni. He is caught robbing the safe of a vicious old moneylender and kills the main in self-defence. When the wrong man is arrested for the crime, a police detective puts pressrue on Ramu to confess and save the innocent man from the gallows. Ramu eventually confesses and makes a moving plea on behalf of the disposseds right to defend themselves against the real villains in society. The film includes the poet Sahir Ludhinavis famous critique of Nehrus non-aligned liberalism: Chin-o-Arab hamara, with an opening stanza declaring China and Arabia are ours/India is ours/We have no roof over our heads/The whole world is ours (China and Arabia being references to Chou En-Lai and Nasser). This song is picturised at night in Bombays easily recognisable square oppoiste the Victoria Terminus where even today, as Kapoor does in the film, one may sleep on the pavement without police interference. Other classic numbers include Asman pe hai khuda aur zameen pe hum (The Lord is in the heavens and we on earth/And these days He doesnt look our way very often) sung by Kapoor to a cabaret dancer and intercut with the death of Sohnis father. The best-known number is the title refrain heralding a new dawn, Woh subah kabhi to aayegi. *.* Criminals are they born or made? This question is as old as the battle between the haves and have-nots. . In order to liquidate crime, Punishment was born. But not all manmade laws have succeeded in uprooting crime. The question therefore persists who makes criminals/ . Crime cannot subsist or grow without the barriers between the rich and poor, the high and the low dreated by the class system of society. Therefore the way to abolish crime and eliminate criminals lies at the root of inewuality, want, poverty and exploitaion. . Criminal is merely a symbol of this economic chaos, an embodiment of the chain of barriers and the distinctions that hear apart two human beings, one of whom has what the other has not. . Ram (Raj Kapoor) who holds the centre of screen in "PHIR SUBHA HOGI" is the victim of the forces that produce criminals out of kindest of souls, noblest of minds the most uncriminal of human beings. . The moral of Rams story is the spirit of the story of Dostoyevskys crime and punishment upon which "PHIR SUBHA HOGI" is based. It is a reminder to all those who strive to banish crime from the surface of mother earth that not punishment but a process of purification of grant of equal opportunities to all men can give rise to a new dawn where no human being will have to face the frowns of economic insecurity. . Rams voice represents the voice of those teeming millions who believe that there is always a budding morrow hidden into midnight.