Promila Kanya

As human beings, we possess not one or two, but many identities. Most of us have families where we are daughters, sons, fathers or mothers. Even those who hold the highest positions of a society or a country are also family members at the end of the day. They too are mere human beings of flesh and blood who have emotions like sadness and happiness. ‘Hasina: A daughter’s tale’ is one such story where the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s life as a daughter and sister, who lost all of her family members is shown. A tragedy of that magnitude not only wrecked the country but her life as well.
The beginning is simple where the PM is seen cooking for her family as her toddler granddaughter wants to help her out. These realistic sides to her which are shown makes the audience realize that she does have a life beyond politics, she too has grandchildren who like her ‘morog polao’ and she too cradles her baby grandson at night and lulls him to sleep. Most of the conversations are done by Sheikh Hasina alongside her sister Sheikh Rehana and they reminisce many things together.
Only these two sisters had survived the atrocious predawn of 15th August because they were in Brussels, Belgium at that time. But the news of their family’s murder reached them soon and those who treated them to expensive candle light dinner the night before, literally threw them out on the streets in the morning. The sisters were lost and in a vulnerable situation but they eventually survived. Maybe it is through this incident and many more in the future from which Sheikh Hasina draws her immense strength from.
Even if you claim to be stone-hearted, the narrations will melt your heart. The documentary shows absolutely nothing political, the only wish behind making it was to portray the pain and loss of two sisters who were orphaned overnight. Sheikh Rehana says,” We lost our father, true, but I think losing our mother hurt more because she would take care of everything for us. Even now, before doing anything, I think to myself how Amma would have done it, would she have approved it?!” Sheikh Hasina also shares some stories about her family in a way which makes the audience believe that she is actually confiding in her people and the feeling of loss is mutual. If she had lost her father, the nation too had lost their Bangabandhu.
We see glimpses of the family that Sheikh Hasina and Sheikh Rehena built over the decades, sons, daughters and grandchildren who meet over dinner and badminton games at the Ganabhaban. We also see bits of Tungipara, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s birthplace which the PM thinks is “the most beautiful place on earth”.
The only song used in the documentary is ‘Amar sadh na mitilo’ and Debojyoti Mishra did a brilliant job of using it in the most perfect way. We learn that this song was one of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s favorites and he would play it on and on.
A beautiful depiction of uphill of emotions and struggles, the entire team behind the documentary deserves a huge round of applause. Every scene is carefully, neatly and skillfully created and there is no unwanted space in between them, the audience stays engaged and mesmerized throughout the 70 minutes.