Sometime it happens that one aspect of an opus got so much fame that the main work take a backseat in the fame. Probably that is what happened with Fauji – a Hindi TV serial which was aired in 1989 on Doordarshan, the sole Television network in India during those days.
Shah Rukh Khan was the biggest present that TV serial gave the Film and TV industry. The serial was directed by Rtd. Col. Kapoor with an aim to bring the training and real life of commandos of Indian army in-front (Indian Army Commando Regiment). The serial was to let the people know the army and soldiers better. Of course, one needs to understand the guardians better 🙂
And guardian is the proper word, as they not only guard the motherland but also takes care of people living there. Be it flood, disaster, riots or anything similar, the soldier play major role in tackling the situation within the country. And of course, they guard borders from outsiders with wrong intentions.
So yes, the serial must be remembered for debut of Shah Rukh Khan (actually Shah Rukh’s debut was in a Hindi TV serial – Dil Dariya – went unnoticed so people believe – Fauji – as his debut), but not at the missing the heart of the TV serial, which it was aimed for.
During those days, there were budget and technology both were available at limited extent. And it is reflected in the TV series also. If to talk about the performances, there are several under-performances too. However one should watch this TV serial when get a chance, for the positive stuff it contains. The good thing is that the TV serial is available on DVD.
There are other interesting facts associated with the serial like, before Shah Rukh Khan, Milin Kapoor was to do the role. Milin was handsome and possessor of good persona. But because of his talent in editing and other behind the camera stuff; he decided to be behind the camera. Of course Shah Rukh acted well, but we cannot deny the brilliant writing of his character and entire serial, and the team work and efforts form all made the TV serial a big success and a major launching point of Shah Rukh’s career. It is also worth to note that Khan is one of the most convincing actors in the TV serial. It is also worth to note that the character of – Abhimanyu Rai – was loosely based on Lt. Col. Sanjoy Banerji of the Corps of Engineers( Bengal Sappers).
Colonel Raj Kapoor
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|Colonel Raj Kapoor
|Colonel Raj Kapoor
|Rakesh Sharma, Aamina S. Kapoor, Shahrukh Khan, Manjula Avatar, Vikram Chopra, Gautam Bhradwaj, Vishwajeet Pradhan, A. Kannan, Sonal Dabral, Nikhil Dewan, Ranbir Singh, Sanjay Mittal, Narendra Ardhawa, Kamati Anwar, Ajay Gehan, Sanjay Taneja, Anupama Sahni, and others…
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The first episode does the work of Introduction mainly and it is titled as – Kadam Mila.
We understood the title of the episode in first 2-3 minutes itself. We see various youth going to somewhere, a pair of them on bike, one in a bus and one in a car. They report to – II COMMANDOS STUDENT REPORTING CENTER. So no matter what your family background or economic status is, you are reaching to the same place to match your feet!
Here we meet Abhimanyu Rai (Abhi), Dev, Peter, Varun (Thakur VaruneshwarSinghJi ParameshwarSinghJi Chauhan) and Ravi. All they are the students (actually army officers, but came here for commando training – so they are students).
After welcoming the students the commandant hands them over to their instructors. And from the very next day their training was started. It was introduction to their teachers which let them know that they are very practical and strict. And, of course the instructors (especially in armed forces) have to be like them also.
There are some youthful attributes, their eagerness to flirt and other stuff is also explored. And as it is quite natural, the portrayal of the same never looks out of place.
The serial was acclaimed critically and was popular in audience. It is a good watch at leisure.