Aashram Web Series Review, Cast and Trailer HD

Aashram Web Series Review

STORY: In the hamlet of Kashipur (Uttar Pradesh), Baba Nirala Ji Maharaj aka Baba Kashipur Wale (Bobby Deol) is regarded as the messiah of minority communities and the downtrodden. But this self-proclaimed Godman has a dark history and it is now catching up with him. Baba ji’s got two choices — let fate take its own course or use all his might to silence the ones who are snooping around for him to be brought to justice. What will he choose?

REVIEW: The year is 2012 and the skeletal remains of a body have surfaced on a forest land that has been handed over to a corporate giant by the government through illegal means. In another part of Kashipur, Baba Nirala (meaning unique) is losing sleep over his past misdeeds. This dead body only adds to his anxiety and the top-notch members of the Aashram know that they need to act fast before it all traces back to them and Baba in particular.

As a filmmaker, Prakash Jha is known for highlighting deep-rooted social issues in his movies and his current outing is a nine-part exposé of a Godman. The character Baba ji is chalked out first to infuse fear, and then to demand respect not just from his zealots but also from those who are watching him continue with his reign of terror on their TV screens. Interestingly, in ‘Aashram’, Jha juggles multiple topics: the prevalence of discrimination against harijans and a certain section’s displeasure over minority reservations being two of the most glaring (and ironic) ones. However, the ill-treatment of the Dalits is pencilled in to sort of set the tone of the web show and pave the path for what lies ahead. However, the subject is touched upon only moderately and dropped unceremoniously after the first two episodes. Since some inculpate that corruption goes hand-in-hand with religious fanaticism, Jha incorporates political goons and lawlessness into his story, and the war between these two worlds — the influence of Godmen in India and the power of politics — makes for a gripping watch.

However, after the first few episodes, attention is swiftly shifted to the megalomaniac Baba and his henchman Bhopa (Chandan Roy Sanyal) — both calm, both conniving. One wouldn’t have imagined Bobby Deol to step into the evil shoes of a seasoned conman/a cruel history rap sheeter. The tranquillity, juxtapositioned against his larger-than-life persona, that Deol brings to his Baba Kashipur Wale is hypnotising. In the sequences where he is rendering ‘pravachans’ with a bhajan-like background score, Bobby is every bit the poor man’s Robinhood that he is made out to be. And when the curtain falls, the monstrous act comes to the forefront in the blink of an eye; the transition from a God-loving to blood-sucking Baba is smooth as a whistle. Bengali actor Chandan Roy Sanyal does all the dirty work for his partner-in-crime as if they were Gabbar and Sambha of the crime world. And that is a compliment! Sub-Inspector Ujagar Singh (Darshan Kumaar) has an epiphanic moment upon forensic specialist Dr. Natasha Kataria’s (Anupriya Goel) arrival. Together, they form the anti-Baba Kashipur Wale squad. Kumar aces the role of a toughie and someone who is second best at most things in life, and Goenka is uber confident as the only female doctor in UP dealing with post-mortem reports. There are other impactful performances too and Tushar Pandey, Vikram Kochhar, Anurita Jha, Aditi Sudhir Pohankar and Rajeev Siddhartha deserve special mentions here for moving the narrative forward with their parallel plotlines.

Without a shadow of a doubt, ‘Aashram’ is well-researched and cinematographer Chandan Kowli and production manager Manoj Sharma’s attention to (set) detail is evident, be it walls flaunting life-size pictures of the Godman and thick books of the leader’s preachings to coffee mugs with his photos printed on them and calendars with Baba’s hands folded in humility. Jha’s nuanced storytelling deserves accolades.

We can sum up this social commentary while borrowing one of the best lines in the series mouthed by Darshan Kumaar, “Jahaan noton se hoti hai kanoon ki aisi ki taisi, usiko India main kehte hain democracy.”

GenreCrime drama
Screenplay byKuldeep Ruhil, Tejpal Singh Rawat, Avinash Kumar, Madhvi Bhatt
Story byHabib Faisal
Directed byPrakash Jha
StarringBobby Deol
Voices ofSanjay Masoom
Composer(s)Advait Nemlekar
Country of originIndia
Original language(s)Hindi
No. of seasons2
No. of episodes18 (season 1&2)
Producer(s)Prakash Jha
Production location(s)India
CinematographyChandan Kowli
Editor(s)Santosh Mandal
Camera setupMulti-camera
Production company(s)Prakash Jha Productions
DistributorMX Player
Original networkMX Player
Picture formatHDTV
Audio formatDolby Digital
Original release28 August 2020

Aashram Web Series Cast

  • Bobby Deol as Kashipur Waale Baba Nirala / Monty
  • Chandan Roy Sanyal as Bhopa Bhai / Bhopa Swami / Bhupendra Singh
  • Aaditi Pohankar as Parminder aka Pammi
  • Tushar Pandey as Satti
  • Darshan Kumar as SI Ujagar Singh
  • Anupriya Goenka as Dr. Natasha
  • Tridha Choudhury as Babita
  • Vikram Kochhar as Sadhu Sharma
  • Anil Rastogi as CM Sundar Lal
  • Sachin Shroff as Hukum Singh
  • Anurita Jha as Kavita
  • Rajeev Siddhartha as Akki
  • Jahangir Khan as Michael Rathi
  • Kanupriya Gupta as Mohini/ Sohini
  • Adhyayan Suman as Tinka Singh
  • Tanmay Ranjan as Dilawar
  • Vikram Katyal as Himanshu, Kavita’s Brother
  • Keshav Pandit as Kavita’s Father
  • Mala Sinha as Kavita’s Mother
  • Rupesh Kumar as Nonny, Pammi’s Cousin
  • Dimpy Mishra as Warden of Girls Hostel
  • Sandeep Yaadav as Bagga, PA of Hukum Singh
  • Navdeep Tomar as Sunny, an Aashram Goon
  • Mirza Ajhar Beg as Gabha, an Aashram Goon
  • Siddharth Srivastav as Jhonny, an Aashram Goon
  • Nawal Shukla as Gurusharan, Pammi’s Father
  • Puneeta Awasthy as Navjot, Pammi’s Mother
  • Akash Jaiswal as Vishal Singh, Pammi’s Best Friend
  • Agraj Panday as Iqbal Kureshi, Pammi’s Coach
  • Anand Prakash Sharma as Gurubaksh, Nonny’s Father
  • Simmi Bhatia as Kuljot, Nonny’s Mother
  • Amit Sinha as IG DP Sharma
  • Amit Sahu as Haricharan Das, a Police officer
  • Ikram Khan as Samandar Singh, Bada Mohalla Head
  • Ajay Singh as Sumit Kaushik, CM’s PA and Brother-in-law
  • Tulika Banerjee as Baba’s Wife
  • Akhilesh Tripathi and Jigesh as Baba’s sons
  • Pradeep Kukreja as Baba Mansukh, Baba Nirala’s Guru And Aashram Predecessor
  • Uday Veer Singh Yadav as Ishwar Nath, Snober’s Father and Baba Mansukh’s close person
  • Aakash Pandey as Rohtas, a lower cast sewadar
  • Varun Tamta as Vikrant Punia, NCB Officer who busts Tinka
  • Midhat Ullah Khan as Malang, an old sewadar at Aashram
  • Subrato Roy as Goyal, Aashram Head Administrator
  • Manish Mishra as Yogesh Rehghar who is a transgender
  • Preeti Singh as Sangeeta Wrestler
  • Akanksha Pandey as Renu, an Aashram Wrestler
  • Parinitaa Seth as Sadhvi Mata
  • Preeti Sood as Sanober
  • Arun Trivedi as Harbhajan Singh, Bada Mohalla Resident
  • Adarsh Pandey as a member of Bada Mohalla.
  • Jaimin Panchal as a member of Bada Mohalla

Aashram Web Series Trailer HD

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