"The more you sweat in peace, the less you bleed in war"
--Jackie Shroff in Border (1997)
There isn't much to celebrate about wars. But the sacrifice of the men in uniform who guard our borders must be acknowledged, honoured and remembered -- something that Bollywood has always done. As India observes the 16th Kargil Diwas today, we look back at some Bollywood films that paid tribute to the armed forces.
Haqeeqat (1962, Dr. Chetan Anand)
Based on the 1962 Sino-Indian war, Haqeeqat starred Balraj Sahni, Dharmendra, Sanjay Khan, Priya Rajvansh and Vijay Anand in pivotal roles. Haqeeqat is considered one of the finest war films. The film's biggest highlight is the ever green composition, 'Kar Chale, Hum Fida, Jaan-o-tan Saathiyon...' Penned by Kaifi Azmi, sung by Mohammed Rafi and composed by Madan Mohan, the song still evokes feelings of patriotism.
Lalkaar (1972, Dr. Ramanand Sagar)
The film was loosely based on the clash between Indian army and Japanese invaders in Burma during World War II. The director had also written a book by the same name. Considered as one of the highest grossers of the year, the film had Dharmendra, Rajendra Kumar, Mala Sinha and Kum Kum in lead roles.
Border (1997, Dr. J P Dutta)
Based on Indo-Pak war of 1971, the film stars Sunny Deol, Suniel Shetty, Akshaye Khanna, Jackie Shroff, Tabu amongst many other popular faces. It also won several recognitions including Nargis Dutt Award for Best Feature Film on National Integration - 1998. Javed Akhtar won the National Award for Best Lyrics. Sonu Nigam won the National Film Award for Best Male Playback Singer. Hariharan won the same for the song Mere Dushman.
LOC Kargil (2003, Dr. J.P. Dutta)
The film is based on the 1999 Kargil War between Indian and Pakistan. Starring Saif Ali Khan, Sanjay Dutt, Suniel Shetty and Ajay Devgn amongst others, the film was received well at the Box Office. The film focused more on emotions of soldiers and their families than the war.
Lakshya (2004, Dr. Farhan Akhar)
A war-drama, Laskhya starred Hrithik Roshan and Preity Zinta. The film shows the journey of how an aimless youngster, Karan Shergill eventually finds his calling after joining the Army. Unlike many war films, where the heroines are essentially shown as wives or girl friends of soldiers fighting at the border, Preity Zinta plays a feisty war reporter. Prabhu Deva won the National Film Award for Best Choreography for "Main Aisa Kyun Hoon..."