Inspired by true events, this is the story of one man’s personal battle between right and wrong, his devotion to his country and his love for his wife.
In the middle 1940’s, while India struggled to gain independence from the British Empire and Queen Victoria’s rule, the British created a secret group known as the Pandits. Their objective was to carry out secret missions to gather information, influence people and, in this case, steal.
When a poor farmer takes his ill wife to the city for medical help their lives are forever changed when the British use him to steal the Sacred Scriptures from the Dalai Lama’s Potala Palace in Tibet.
Filmed on location in Leh, Ladakh (Kashmir), bordering Tibet, and in Pataudi, Haryana, located near Delhi, India, the Buddhist Monk brings to the audience a little-known historical event and the amazing scenery of these very ancient areas.
Sukh Nain Singh is living happily as a farmer despite the fact he holds a B.A and an L.L.P Education until his beloved wife, Aruna, falls very ill. After the doctor examines Aruna, he convinces Nain to take Aruna to the city for better medical help, and at the same time he encourages Nain to seek employment and use his educational skills.
Nain and Aruna head off to the city but not before Aruna makes Nain promise her three things: not to lie, steal or beg. Nain promises Aruna he won’t do those things and then they head off leaving Nain’s mother and his little brother behind at the farm.
While on the road, Nain and Aruna meet two policemen who threaten the couple with a trip to jail, bodily harm and harassment of Aruna. They change their minds and demand Nain’s money instead, leaving them on the road with no means of support. Despite this setback, Nain and Aruna agree to continue on.
As they travel along the road on foot, their friend Babu drives up with his cart and offers to drive them to the city but once again tragedy strikes as Babu is shot by a rich Raj showing off for his admirers. Babu dies in a field by the side of the road. Again, Nain and Aruna discuss the possibility that travelling to the city may not be worth it, but in the end they both agree to carry on.
Nain and Aruna camp out along the way only to discover that during the night someone stole their suitcase with Aruna’s medicine and their clothes but again, undaunted by their bad luck, they continue to head for the city.
When they finally reach the city they encounter a crazed individual who is led away by police and a beggar in the streets who taunts their arrival to a city where the “British” won’t help them.
Before long Nain breaks two of the promises he made to Aruna but he gets lucky when he meets up with a person who runs a library and printing house. He hires Nain to assist him as Nain has the education and the concise knowledge of Buddhism and Hinduism.
This job improves Nain’s and Aruna’s lives and all is well until the British send two agents to relay an order from the ‘White Sahib’ that the British have a secret conspiracy and want Nain to go to Tibet, sneak into the Dalai Lama’s Potala Palace and steal ancient Tibetan Scriptures. The British have learned of Nain’s deep knowledge of Buddhism and want to use him as their agent to get inside the Palace and steal the scrolls.
Nain is upset that he has to leave Aruna for a while and at the same time, break his last promise not to steal. Despite his reservations he ventures off to fulfill the mission out of misplaced loyalty to the British Empire, at a time of political turmoil in India.
After getting his disguise and instructions he bids farewell to Aruna and sets off on his long trip into Tibet. At his first stop he meets the guide who will take him as far as the Palace as only Nain must finish the task alone.
Dressed as a Buddhist Monk, Nain avoids capture and sneaks in to the Potala Palace, locating the room with the Sacred Scriptures. He steals the Scriptures and flees from the Palace with Palace Guards in pursuit right behind him.
Nain reaches his final destination and hands the Scrolls to a British Agent, leaving those who had helped him to deal with the consequences.
The Buddhist Monk is the product of one man’s 40 year long dream to share a forgotten part of India’s history with the world, and was produced through the hard work and combined vision of his family who overcame obstacles to make this engaging story come to life.
The film steps outside the usual “Bollywood” style with a tasteful and gentle version of what Indian audiences enjoy most about their films - the singing! The music that was composed for the film will impress those with an ear for quality and substance.
The Buddhist Monk is Indie Film Making at its best and it will delight audiences with this true story from a time long ago, wrapped up in the cultural life of the mid 1900’s India and displayed with incredible scenes of some of the most remote places on the planet.