‘A stitch in time saves nine.’ The dictum has turned more or less cliche-ridden. Yet, a timely move can at least save one life, if not all the nine. When Riju Nair set out for making ‘End of a Journey’ (Oru Yathrayude Anthyam), all his efforts were to do something creative through a short film to grab the attention of the public .
Riju is one among the unfortunate many who was destined to witness a gruesome death following a road accident. Some time ago, a bus in which he travelled through the busy PMG junction hit a scooty killing a female motorist. He remembers, ‘many who were on the spot thronged to watch the appalling scene. Yet none was ready to rush her to the hospital. Though the police immediately arrived on the scene, her life could not be saved.”
This sight heralded the birth of an 18-minute short film to evoke response among the public to prevent such incidents from happening in future.
Reading the script, the then Transport Minister Jose Thettayil wholeheartedly agreed to enact a role in the film. An experience of 15 years in the film field led Riju to make a film with a set of actors, who are familiar faces on the small screen. Nine actors, including Mallika Sukumaran, Sajan Soorya, Maneesh Krishna, Leena and Sreelakshmi, were cast in the film.
“Though many are prominent actors, their willingness to work for a noble cause was tremendous. They did not even insist on remuneration. Hope the appearance of artists who are accepted among the audience creates a positive impact on them,” Riju said.
The plot revolves around the death of a young techie Sabarinath, who meets with a road accident. Although his prospective bride Anuja and her brother Arjun pass through the spot, the man discards the request of a local to take the victim to the hospital.
Without realising who actually battles for life, they continue the journey. Arjun even advises his sister who feels pity over the incident “not to be too sentimental over such issues.” Later, when Arjun comes to know about the death of Sabari, he laments over the inappropriate decision he took few hours ago.
Though the film shoot was over by February-March 2011, the declaration of the code-of-conduct for the Assembly elections in 2011 delayed the proceedings as the then minister had acted in it. Post-production works were done only when the elections were over. Riju now expects this film to reach out to the masses.
“Once I get the approval from the Transport and Road Safety Authority, the film shall be screened in major cities and villages,” he adds.
A novelist-cum-short film maker by profession, Riju now works with the tele-serial ‘Harichandanam’ as post production director. He resides at Bharathannoor near Kallara with wife Sindhu Riju Nair and daughter Pratheeksha. The film was premiered in the city the other day.