The awakening

Sushmita Jha
Tuesday, 25 September 2018

We catch up with Prashant Ingole, lyricist of hits like Malhari, Party on my Mind, Adhure, who made his directorial debut with a short film on women empowerment — Budh

From an emotional number Adhure (Mary Kom) to a powerful song of celebration like Malhari (Bajirao Mastani), Prashant Ingole has given the industry many beautiful numbers. Adding another feather to his hat, Prashant has made his directorial debut with a woman-centric short film titled Budh. The film revolves around three women — Laxmi, Zainab and Yvonne, who hail from different social strata but are bound by a common thread — they are all being ill-treated by their family, especially the men in their lives. We caught up with Prashant to know about the film and his journey so far. Excerpts:

Tell us more about Budh and how did you come up with the title?
- Budh is a short film of 17 mins. It’s about women empowerment. It focuses on the communication gap between men and women and how men treat women as a commodity. It is very important for men to respect women, no matter which background they come from. Sadly not just men, but women too ill-treat women. The message of my movie is about respecting a life and appreciating women for what they are and what they do. 

I feel women are like an underwater volcano.

What signficance does the title have?
- I am a morning person and I am a firm believer of Lord Ganesha and Lord Shiva. So I do a lot chanting and meditation. When I meditate, that’s the time when I get all sorts of thoughts. This title also came to me while I was chanting. Since I have made this film for international film festivals, I wanted the title to be unique and powerful at the same time. Also Sanskrit is such a beautiful language and it’s appreciated all across the globe. So I wanted the title to be in Sanskrit. I searched for the Sanskrit word for awakening and I found Budh and I just knew this was it.

You have been given a new name by the industry — New Age Gulzar. How does it feel to be compared to such a legend?
- Gulzar sahab is such a great personality. His work is beautiful and unmatchable. I feel blessed and honoured when people associates me with him. Personally, I don’t feel I am anywhere close to him. The way he transforms his poetry into songs is something only a legend can do. It leaves me speechless. So every time someone calls me the New Age Gulzar, it brings a huge smile on my face.

You graduated in commerce and wanted to become a chef. Then how did you end up being a writer? And how did Bollywood happen to you?
- Writing goes back to 20 years from now. I used to write small poems and prose but never really took it seriously until I fell in love back in 2001. She used to tell me that I write really well and that is how it all started. So love did not make me blind, instead showed me the path. Of course, the journey wasn’t an easy one. It took seven years of struggle to get my first break. I wrote the song Paisa hai power for the film Aa Dekhen Zara, but it did not do well for me. After that I wrote for a couple of films for four years but they too not didn’t succeed. I might have written 200 to 300 scratches which got rejected. It was a tough time for me. It was when I wrote Party on Mind for Race 2 in 2013 that things changed for me. The song was a huge hit and everybody started knowing me in the industry. I started building contacts and that’s how Omung Kumar’s Mary Kom came to me. Then I got the opportunity to get in touch with Bhansali sir. Since then, there has been no looking back.

You have written some very beautiful songs, which among them is your favourite? How was the song created?
- I have been through a lot of struggle, but there was one thing I was very particular about — that I will never beg for work. I just wanted an opportunity and I knew I will be able to prove it. So every moment I failed, I promised myself that I would get up and be even stronger, work harder and write better. All the struggle added several shades to my personality. Now if you ask me to write a song based on any situation, I can write it. So my favourite song is Adhure from Mary Kom. It’s beautiful and equally painful. I literally cried while writing the song. Every word of that song expresses the agony I went through but like Mary Kom, I too never gave up. Ziddi Dil from the same movie is also my favourite.

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