ABBAJAN is credited to be written and directed by Anjan Choudhury (Shatru). The story seems influenced in portions by Tagore’s KABULIWALLAH. In this film, like in the Tagore novel, the lady of the house (Sabitri Chaterjee) harbors suspicion about her daughter’s closeness with a stranger, the difference being that in this film the girl is much older compared to Minnie of KABULIWALLAH.

While Kabuliwallahs from Afghanistan were viewed with suspicion in the Tagore piece, Muslim neighbors replace Kabuliwallahs as victims of suspicion in the eyes of the lady of the house, an orthodox Hindu resenting Muslims. The titular character of ABBAJAN (Ranjit Mullick), a wealthy Muslim neighbor (with a tragic past) of a Hindu family (Dilip Roy, Sabitri Chaterjee and their son & daughter) resembles in some respects to that of KABULIWALLAH, the situation of a close bond developing with the girl with the affectionate and understanding father seem so similar. In both these works, the titular protagonists were missing their daughter and the void accounted for the bond that develops.

Overall, a significant film that emphasizes on the need to build trust between Hindus and Muslims. The supporting cast includes Subhendu Chatterjee, Sumitra Mukherjee, Abhishek Chaterjee, Pallavi Chaterjee, Chumki Choudhury and others.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

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