Popular theater group Prachyanat recently presented their 35th production, Pulsiraat, at the Nilima Ibrahim Auditorium, Mohila Shomiti. Originally written by Palestinian writer and political activist Ghassan Kanafani, it was published in 1962 as Men in the Sun. The story has been adapted by Monirul Islam Rubel, and directed by Kazi Toufikul Islam Emon.
A recent study by the Global Economic Forum reveals that around 15% of the global population would migrate, if given the opportunity. There are people who are forced to migrate due to the unfavorable conditions of their own land. Pulsiraat, a bridge which leads to heaven if successfully crossed, can be said to be a manifestation of the dreams of a better future.
Pulsiraat is an allegorical journey of refugees attempting to escape, represented by three men from three different generations -- the elderly Abu Kayes, the middle aged Assad and teenager Marwan. All three set themselves on an illegal voyage to a different country, in search of a better life. Throughout the story, the characters reveal the events that pushed them forward to risk everything that they hold dear. Their charioteer, Abul Khaijuran, promises to give them a safe ride to Kuwait, in exchange of 10 Dinar each. Hiding in water tanks on the chariot, under the scorching August sun, the lives of the men meet a tragic end as they reach the land of their dreams. The driver, when he discovers the still bodies in the tanks wonders why they did not knock the walls of the tank before dying. The production ends with a brilliant twist in conceptualising the query. Like always, the play has excelled in sound and music. Since it was the first show of the new production, the performance can only improve from here. The houseful auditorium for the back-to-back shows indicates the formidability of Pulsiraat.
Noted theater personnel, Mamunur Rashid, Ramendu Majumdar, Tariq Anam Khan, among other noted personalities were present during the first show of Pulsiraat. Congratulating the team, Mamunur Rashid said, “This is the first time, a Palestinian story has been staged. It is very important that we stage relevant stories from all over the world.”