Final Solution by Mahesh Dattani

Topics: Islam, Muslim, Muhammad Pages: 7 (2657 words) Published: December 26, 2011
Final Solutions has taken the issues of the majority communities in different contexts and situations. It talks of the problems of cultural hegemony, how Hindus had to suffer at the hands of Muslim majority like the characters of Hardika/Daksha in Hussainabad. And how Muslims like Javed suffer in the set up of the majority Hindu community. This all resulted in communal riots and culminated in disruption of the normal social life, and thus hampered the progress of the nation. The mob in the play is symbolic of our own hatred and paranoia. Each member of the mob is an individual, yet they meet into one seething whole as the politicians play on their fears. In this play, the chorus continuously sings sometimes under the mask of Hindus and sometimes under that of Muslims revealing their feelings of fear and hatred for one another. When the Chariot leading the procession is broken and the Pujari is killed the Hindus masks sing: “How dare they!

They broke our Chariot and felled our Gods!
This is our land!
How dare they?”
The mob/chorus comprising five men and ten masks on sticks (five Hindu and five Muslim masks) are the omnipresent factor. Throughout the play, Now Muslim in masks sings:
They hunt us down!
They’re afraid of us!
They beat us up!
We are few!
But we are strong!
The scenes of the play take place inside and outside Ramnik Gandhi’s house where Ramnik has given two Muslim boys shelter from the violent mob outside. The mob is in the form of a chorus, changing its guise into Muslims and Hindus through masks and songs. Inside, a Hindu family is sharply divided over giving shelter to the unknown Muslim youths in the midst of communal frenzy and violence. Even after fifty years of Independence, people have not been able to forget their enemity and bias against each other, i.e. Muslims against Hindus and Hindu against Muslims.

In the play, two young men, Javed and Babban, are hired to disrupt social harmony while others like Hardika’s parents -in-laws have secretly burnt the shop of their Muslim friend, with the selfish end of buying it at reduced price. Final Solutions is based on the apparently friendly relations between Muslims and Hindus and the simmering currents of hatred beneath. The family unit comprises members of different age groups, symbolic of past and present, stretching the plot to over a period of half a century. Young people like Smita, Bobby and Javed, present the future and Ramnik and Aruna, the present while Hardika, the grandmother of Smita, is sometimes presented in Daksha (Past) a fifteen year old newly married young girl, writing her diary and then as her grandmother in her late sixties (present) teaching her children and revealing the family’s past. Major events are presented through her eyes. The play, Final Solutions, is also the story of a young baffled boy Javed, who becomes a victim and a terrorist and is exploited by politicians in the name of ‘Jiahad’. He is trained for the terrorist activities and sabotaging. He is sent to a Hindu ‘Mohalla’ where a ‘Rath Yatra’ is taking place. Javed is so over-whelmed with the fervour of ‘Jehad’ that he throws the first stone on the ‘Rath’ causing chaos, ending up in the killing of the ‘Pujari’ and crashing down of the ‘Rath’. Bobby a close friend of Javed, saves him from the violent mob and gets him sehtler in Ramnik Gandhi’s house, where causes of Hindus and Muslims hatred are being discussed and strange secrets of terror, greed, avarice and communal hatred are being revealed. The details of stage given in the play help the audience to experience the shifts in time, Dattani keeps shuffling the frames:- “Within the confines of the ramp is a bare born presentation of the house of GANDHI’S with just wooden blocks for furniture. However upstage perhaps as an elevation a detailed kitchen and a Pooja room. “ When the curtain rises, we find Daksha, the newlywed bride, going through her diary dated March 31, 1948. Considering her...
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