The Boy Who Fought an Empire is a play that seeks to inform children, and have them meaningfully engage with the fascinating boyhood, adult, and mature years of the person who became known as ‘Netaji.’
Subhash Chandra Bose searched for meaning and purpose since a young age. Influenced by his headmaster he spends time with nature and reads widely but then turns to religion in the hope of finding greater meaning. Dissatisfied with following religious rituals, he is taken up by the words of Swami Vivekanand who emphasizes serving the poor and needy. As a young man, Subhash Bose tries to save lives in a cholera-infected village even as he fights bullying in college. A brilliant student, he turns down a lucrative career in the ICS. A leading light within the Congress, he gives it all up to wage a war for India’s independence. How did Netaji raise an army, and try to stave off the Bengal Famine? Did he succeed in securing independence for India?
Dramatic incidents in Netaji’s life are interspersed with scenes in which five children react to his life, struggles and achievements in terms of their own identities. This fabulous device gives this unique and exciting play a contemporary feel, adding to the modern-day relevance of his life.
Rajesh Talwar has written on a variety of themes ranging from social justice to law and culture for international and national magazines, newspapers, and websites.