Vidya Balan’s ‘Sherni’ Explains The Dying Harmony Between Mankind And Nature

Sherni Explains The Dying Harmony Between Mankind And Nature
Vidya Balan essays the role of Vidya Vincent, a divisional forest officer who along with her team has set out on subduing a feral tigress. Image credit: Screenshot from the film, Sherni

Vidya Balan’s recent launch, Sherni, talks about how nature and humans should harmoniously coexist and elaborates the challenges faced in taming a wild tigress.

Vidya Balan essays the role of Vidya Vincent, a divisional forest officer who along with her team has set out on subduing a feral tigress that has been tormenting the locals. As Vidya puts in the efforts of calming down and making the villagers aware of the prowess of the tigress, the occupants have a varied perspective on the said matter. They hire a sharp shooter to annihilate the menacing animal. “This is a sardonic take on the situation of humans exploiting the habitats of the animals and they in turn blitzing back” retorts Tina Sharma, theatre artist in Bangalore.

What’s Sherni about ?

Sherni attempts to portray the tyranny that the animals and the environment faces through the activities of the humans. With the pandemic hitting the population and all human activities flat-lining, it’s nature that has been the most vitalised. The air has been cleared off the particulate matters, the water bodies have become pellucid and the animals have been roaming freely. “The most beneficial effects of the pandemic have been on the wildlife as they are more oftentimes spotted without the fear of being hunted down by poachers,” remarks Sawant Reddy, an IFS officer in Telangana. Perpetual invasion from humans has very evidently taken a massive toll onto nature.

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The perturbed tigress here depicts the cogent trepidations continually faced by the wildlife. Reddy states, “It’s the law of nature, that, whenever humans have maltreated the environment, nature has taken its vengeance and it has always been very vile.” Sharma says, “Through this cinematic dramatisation, the cast and crew of Sherni hope to awaken the people to not plague the animals for the mercenary needs of the human race.”

Sherni also takes a feminist approach as to how the society constantly attacks the life choices and way of living of women. For eons, the patricentric humanity has been censorious of every move of women. And when Vidya decides for a showdown, she viciously counterblasts making everyone privy to her power. “A strong headed woman has always been looked down upon by our community. And when she unabashedly seeks to mute these connotations, she is catcalled for it”, comments Sharma.

Do we really need to retrospect our actions?

Throughout the pandemic, the lockdown has edified us that we can exist and continue to burgeon without our encroachment to the environment. Under our roofs, we can progress and maintain a symbiosis between nature and humans. Fiddling with the universe has time and again burst a gut in reminding us of its enormous ability to ambush us. But we fail to recognise its signs, and the film Sherni portrays that. Novel coronavirus is an idyllic illustration of this matter. With years of deliberate neglect and abuse to the environment from our actions, nature reciprocated.

Such callous human operation forebodes the lamentable ripples that nature will continue to give until we reappraise ourselves from within.

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