Sherdil The Pilibhit Saga trailer: Pankaj Tripathi goes on a suicide mission in Srijit Mukherji’s satire inspired by real-life events

T-Series, Reliance Entertainment and Match Cut Productions have debuted the first trailer for director Srijit Mukherji’s satire Sherdil: The Pilibhit Saga, starring Pankaj Tripathi. Inspired by bizarre true practice near the Pilibhit Tiger Reserve, where people used to leave their elderly family members for tigers to prey on and then claim compensation from the administration, the film is slated for a theatrical release on June 24.

Tripathi stars as Gangaram, the sarpanch of a village, who is refused compensation by the authorities after wild animals destroy farm land operated by his fellow villagers. Gangaram then decides to manipulate a government scheme through which the families of people who die of tiger attacks will be given Rs 10 lakh as compensation. Comparing himself to Bhagat Singh, he decides to sacrifice himself, much to the anger of his wife, played by Sayani Gupta.

But Gangaram’s plan is thwarted when he runs into a poacher played by Neeraj Kabi, and is subsequently arrested on suspicion of trying to kill tigers. The trailer then sheds its satirical tone and turns into a courtroom drama with a message.

In a statement, director Srijit Mukherji said, “I got inspired by the real incident of tragic practises in villages bordering the Pilibhit Tiger Reserve and I knew I had to capture it in my next. It takes great courage to sacrifice one’s life to save the family and my film revolves around this heroism with a focus on man and nature conflict. This subject is really close to my heart and I hope it will ignite the same emotions with the audiences regarding various social issues in our society.”

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This is the filmmaker’s second Hindi feature, after Begum Jaan. He also directed two episodes in the Netflix anthology series Ray, and is now working on the Mithali Raj biopic Shabaash Mithu, starring Taapsee Pannu. Pankaj Tripathi was last seen in Bachchhan Paandey.

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