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Patrick Swayze, City of Joy and Bihar

“One thing I’m not going to do is chase staying alive. You spend so much time chasing staying alive, you won’t live.” Patrick Swayze.

The actor Patrick Swayze died on 14th of Sept 2009 at the age of 57 after a two-year battle with pancreatic cancer.

Still from film City of Joy

Still from film City of Joy

Patric Swayze was leading actor of City of Joy, a film based on real life priest Gaston Grandjean, living in Calcutta (Kolkata), India. City of Joy is a novel written by Dominique Lapierre (1985) and a 1992 film directed by Roland Joffé. The book reveals a very grim and stark picture of the living conditions in a Kolkata slum and move around the life in the slum called Anand Nagar ( literally means City of Joy) and the life of rickshaw puller, Hazari (played by leading Indian actor Om Puri) and his family.
Patric also worked in some other famous film like Dirty Dancing and Ghost.

Now you must be wondering what is this all about Bihar here? If you have watched City of Joy then you may remember rickshaw puller, Hazari. Hazari was playing role of immigrant labourer from Bihar. Story move around the group of immigrants from Bihar and their life in slum of Kolkata. The story is real depiction of Bihari labourers and Kolkata use to be their preferred destination. Now these Bihari immigrants have spread all over India and their situation has got worst.

Dominique Lapierre’s book and film city of joy helped to highlight problem of slums in Kalkota/India but I doubt anyone tried to understand real problem. Why these Bihari labourers are immigrating? Many NGOs and charity organisation are working in Kalkota or other slums of India but how many of them are trying to reach Bihar.
I doubt if we understand the real problem of Hazari and why Hazari exist?

But I guess working for a cause, the problem need to be sexy, it need to have “wow” factor like City of Joy. May be Bihar is not giving that sexy appeal to attract NGOs/social institutions. There will be many City of Joy and millions Hazari as mother of all “the Bihar” will never appeal us to help Hazari in his village.


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