IN MEMORY OF FRIENDS documents the violence and terror in Punjab, India - a land torn apart by religious fundamentalists and a repressive government.
After examining the political turmoil of the late 1970s and rise of Sikh fundamentalism, the film concentrates on the legacy of Bhagat Singh, a young socialist hanged by the British in 1931 at age 23. Singh has since become an almost legendary figure. Today, both sides claim him as a symbol of their cause: the socialist state eulogizes him as a patriot, while Khalistani separatists portray him as a Sikh militant. In fact, Singh was neither. Just prior to his death he wrote a book which he entitled Why I Am An Atheist.
Focusing on the Singh's unlikely martyrdom, IN MEMORY OF FRIENDS is an incisive look at the strife in India today.
"IN MEMORY OF FRIENDS celebrates the efforts of a group of Sikh and Hindu peace activists who work to restore communal harmony in the face of hatred and violence... Vivid and visceral."—Critical Asian Studies
Jury Prize Winner, 1990 Mannheim Film Festival
Silver Conch Winner, 1990 Bombay Film Festival
Best Investigative Documentary, 1990 National Awards (India)
"Provides much needed insight into the fractured politics of the Punjab. A worthy film."—Library Journal