Mukkabaaz and the Many Punches Indian Sportsmen Get

Pop Culture

Mukkabaaz and the Many Punches Indian Sportsmen Get

Illustration: Palak Bansal


n the second half of Anurag Kashyap’s ambitiously audacious Mukkabaaz, Shravan Singh (a flawless Vineet Kumar Singh), a lower-caste boxer from Bareilly arrives for the District Boxing Championships with his coach (Ravi Kishan) in tow. It’s a defining moment for Shravan, who has been denied a chance to represent the state for the last two years due to his caste, despite being proved the best boxer in Uttar Pradesh. It doesn’t help that Shravan is also at loggerheads with Bhagwan Das Mishra (a menacing Jimmy Shergill), the man who runs the federation like his personal fiefdom and who is adamant to ruin Shravan’s career even before it begins.

But before Shravan gets the chance to prove himself, he and the audience are treated to a curious sight: The ground that where the championship was supposed to take place has been taken over by the sports minister who is hosting a wedding there. Trumpets are blown, where punches should have been thrown. Left with no other choice, the competing boxers and coaches set out to construct a makeshift ring.