Amitabh Bachchan-starrer Jhund will hit the theatres on March 4, 2022. And for the first time, Bachchan was seen playing a character based on a real-life legend. But before we get into it, let’s see what is the real story behind Jhund, a sports drama helmed by director Nagraj Manjule of Sairat fame.
The real story behind Jhund
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Jhund is based on the man who received the Real Hero Award from none other than Sachin Tendulkar. Meet Vijay Barse, the man who dedicated his life to sportsmanship and creating athletes out of kids that society had renounced.
Born in 1945 in Nagpur, Barse worked as a sports professor at Hislop College in Nagpur. One rainy afternoon in July 2001, as he had taken shelter under a tree, he spotted a group of slum kids playing makeshift football with a broken bucket, and that was his Eureka moment! What happened next changed the fates of hundreds of underprivileged kids.
Coming from an underprivileged background, Barse saw this as an opportunity to keep these kids away from theft and other criminal activities by training them to become athletes. That prompted him and some of his colleagues to organise a football tournament for these kids. To his surprise, about 128 teams had taken part in it. And that’s when he made up his mind to pursue this on a larger scale.
That same year when he retired, he had received a sum of Rs 18 lakhs. He used that money to start the NGO Krida Vikas Sanstha Nagpur (KSVN), his wife Ranjana Barse and his son Abhijeet Barse. KSVN is the parent organisation for Slum Soccer, a soccer academy that provides training and rehabilitation to deprived slum kids.
The NGO KSVN’s mission is to offer motivation and fair opportunities to slum-dwelling kids and homeless young adults. It uses football as a tool and platform for social improvement whilst providing new facilities, infrastructure and tournaments to showcase talent and skills.
Later Vijay Barse’s son Abhijeet revealed that Barse had also worked for the Indo-Pak cross-border peace. In 2014, Barse appeared in the first episode of the Aamir Khan show Satyamev Jayate, where the Indian public took notice of him and his noble work, and he was highly appreciated throughout the nation.
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How is the Slum Soccer organisation doing today?
Slum Soccer conducts soccer tournaments at the state and national levels. This academy also gave Indian football Akhilesh Paul, who currently plays for ATK Mohun Bagan FC.
Slum Soccer today runs several projects that aim to improve the lives of impoverished kids through the medium of football. They have the ‘Deaf Kidz Goal’ project, which aims to train hearing-impaired people to become coaches to marginalised hearing-impaired children and teach them important life skills through the platform of football. It will also empower these children to enhance their educational potential.
They also have the National Championship – Women project that provides equal access to participation. Barse’s contribution to Indian sports is unparalleled, and Jhund is a homage to the man.
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