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Bolly good show as film gives a rare nod to inclusivity


Bolly good show as film gives a rare nod to inclusivity

‘Jalsa’, which premieres on Friday, stars a child with cerebral palsy playing a character with the disability

Sunil Kataria

Bollywood's upcoming drama-thriller Jalsa features a child character with cerebral palsy played by an actor with the disability in what the film’s director and cast called a rare sign of inclusivity in the world’s largest film industry.

Starring Vidya Balan and Shefali Shah, two of Bollywood’s most admired actors, Jalsa (Celebration) revolves around a road accident in which a driver hits a girl and flees the scene. Surya Kasibhatla, a 10-year-old from Texas of Indian origin who has cerebral palsy, plays Balan’s character’s son.

“As a country, we need to be much, much better when it comes to sensitivity,” director Suresh Triveni said. “I genuinely hope and believe more and more people with conditions are accepted the way they are and they are not looked at through a separate lens.”..

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