The Policeman is denounced by the public, criticized by the preacher, ridiculed by the movies, berated by the newspapers and unsupported by the prosecuting officers and judges. He is shunned by the respectable. He is exposed to countless temptations and dangers, condemned while he enforces the law and dismissed when not. He is supposed to possess the qualifications of Soldier, Doctor, Priest, Lawyer, Diplomat and Education with remuneration less than that of a daily laborer. - August Vollmore (1876-1955)
The Constitution of India mandates law and order as the responsibility of the state, so most of the policing lies with the respective states and territories of India. All senior police officers in the state police forces, as well as those in the federal agencies, are members of the Indian Police Service (IPS). A branch of the Ministry of Home Affairs of the Government of India, the IPS provides leaders and commanders to the Indian Intelligence Agencies like Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW), Intelligence Bureau (IB), Central Bureau of Investigations (CBI), Criminal Investigation Department (CID) etc., Indian Federal Law Enforcement Agencies, and Civil and Armed Police Forces in all the states and union territories. Instituted in 1948 - a year after India gained independence from Britain - the IPS works to to maintain order, enforce the law, and prevent and detect crime.
As India celebrates it's 68th year of Independence, Singham Returns hits the theatres and once again Ajay Devgn dons the avatar of a policeman.
In this film, Singham is the DCP of the Mumbai Police Force who is battling the widespread issue of black money. This sequel to the 2011 blockbuster Singham, is an equally entertaining film. While the storyline may not be completely new, the execution is well-done. This is a definite Rohit Shetty entertainer - with lots of cars, explosions and action scenes - and Ajay Devgn comfortably dons this avatar again with style. The addition of Anupam Kher in a small but important role makes the film even better.
While the actor has often taken on the role of law enforcer, here are five particularly memorable films featuring Ajay Devgn in the role of a member of the police force.
Description: Police Inspector Jay Bakshi (Ajay Devgn) has been assigned the task of apprehending gangsters affiliated to notorious criminal don, Raj Solanki (Naseeruddin Shah). Assisting him in this task is Inspector Sandhya (Juhi Chawla) who is secretly investigating Jay Bakshi's background. When Jay accumulates enough evidence to arrest Raj Solanki, he learns that the criminal don is his biological father.
Why I Love This Film: This is an oldie but goodie and one of Devgn's best performances. Bakshi is a gum-chewing, confident, young police officer who only sees good and bad. When he comes to know the truth about his lineage, his world is turned upside down - and so is his father's. Despite some of the over-the-top action sequences, this is sincere film with a lot of heart. The film features several popular musical numbers and even Devgn, not known for his dance performances, successfully shakes a leg.
English Translation: "Holy Waters"
Release Date: 29 August 2003
Director: Prakash Jha
Music by: Dandesh Shandilya, Wayne Sharpe
Description: Superintendent of Police Amit Kumar (Ajay Devgn) takes charge of Tejpur Police Headquarters and is appalled at the manner in which the police and it's officers conduct themselves. Corruption, inefficiency, bribery, nepotism, favoritism, and crime, especially at the hands of the police themselves, seem to be the rule rather than the exception. His leadership motivates and leads a dysfunctional, unprincipled police force of Tezpur to fight against the corrupt politicians. The tactics employed by his department impact the community and lead to an internal police inquiry.
Why I Love This Film: This isn't your typical Bollywood entertainer - it is an intense drama and you won't find any songs and dance performances here. Amit Kumar walks into a war zone where he must battle corrupt politicians, over-zealous police officers who step over the line, and his conscience. Director Prakash Jha knew from the start who he wanted to play Amit Kumar. "For the kind of intensity which I needed in my main protagonist, the Superintendent of Police of Tezpur, a man who is intelligent, who's well-read, who believes in very civil, social manners of life, who's dignified, who's believable, who's honest. I could think of none but Ajay Devgn," Jha explains. The film is inspired by a true story in Bhagalpur, where 30 or so prisoners were blinded with battery acid by prison guards and police in the 1980s. The story is powerful and the performances outstanding.
Memorable Quote: "Remember that the police of any society is like that society itself. The man under the khakee uniform is also one of you! Selfish and weak." - SP Amit Kumar
Description: Police inspector Ajit Rathod (Ajay Devgn) is in search of members of a terrorist group after capturing their leader. Amjad Khan (Akshay Kumar) is a auto-rickshaw driver who lives with his mother in a small tenement in Bombay's slums. His friend Avinash (Tusshar Kapoor) was drawn to Mumbai with the ambition to become a film star. All three men are dealing with loss and failure. Soon they discover their worlds are linked by a secret which will change them forever.
Why I Love This Film: The combination of Ajay Devgn and Akshay Kumar is a major part of what makes this film work. Rathod is driven by both duty and the need for revenge. Khan is just trying to support his mother, get married, and make ends meet. The first meeting between these two features a major misunderstanding, but soon that is resolved and they begin to share a friendship. Told against the backdrop of religion and caste prejudices, their friendship highlights what it means to be human.
Film Postscript: "The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion. After all there is but one race - Humanity." (portions attributable to Thomas Paine)
Description: Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) officers Sidhant Chaturvedi (Akshaye Khanna) and Major Pratap Kumar (Ajay Devgn) are sent to investigate the disappearances of three university students who went missing while visiting the small village of Jhanjhar. Their investigation pits them against the villagers, the local politicians and police, and the Indian administration as they uncover caste wars and honor killings.
Why I Love This Film: Based on real incidents that happened in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, this realistic, issue-based film takes you on a journey through a society fraught with fear and prejudice. As the CBI officers get further into the investigation, they become more personally involved in the lives of the villagers. All the lead actors - including Paresh Rawal as superintendent of police Ajatshatru Singh IPS - deliver powerful performances with the appropriate level of gravitas needed for the subject manner. When asked about the issue of honor killings, Ajay Devgn explained, "Who gives anyone a right to kill someone? It just can’t be encouraged ... even a dog on the street can’t be killed just like that. So the killing of human beings just cannot be encouraged or justified in the name of honour killings. It can’t be a solution or punishment for two people in love."
Description: Honest, diligent and honored Inspector Bajirao Singham (Ajay Devgn) fights against injustice and prejudice using his own ethics and principles. When destiny sets Singham against the powerful criminal and politician Jaykant Shikre (Prakash Raj) he finds himself transferred from his hometown of Shivgarh to the big city of Goa, where Shikre is the kingpin. Shikre leaves no stone unturned to make sure Singham's life is a living nightmare.
Why I Love This Film: One of the most popular characters portrayed in Indian cinema, Singham brought honor to the role of the police officer who is often portrayed in a negative light. Full of action, explosions and smashing cars, the film is a testosterone treat. Watching the lionhearted Singham turn the tables on the arrogant Shikre keeps you entertained through to the end. The amusing romance between Singham and Kavya Bhosle (Kajal Aggarwal) is the icing on the cake.
Memorable Quotes: "Welcome to Goa, Singham!" - Jaykant Shikre. "Now, I have lost my mind. Jaykant Shikre, it's your turn now!" - Bajirao Singham.
Don't know which film to watch first? The following playlist features trailers or songs for each of these films, including Singham Returns.