Back to the roots
Titled Bajra vs Burger, Raj presents the simpler life back in the villages.
It was back in 2013 that Raj Singh Verma decided make a career shift - he left behind his busy, metropolitan life to live a more sustainable life. And one thing that pushed him to make the move was stress.
"I suffered from a severe migraine that got me thinking: is this really the way we are supposed to live our lives?" recalls Raj over the phone. Unlike many professionals who then tend to dismiss it, Raj actually decided to work towards it. And so, he moved back to the villages to begin farming.
Today, the advertising professional and ex-MBA, has a farm in Jaipur, Rajasthan and Karjat, which is on the outskirts of the city.
Having worked in the industry for this long, Raj, obviously comes with financial backing. But, if you think he is using his monetary privilege to have other people working on his farms, you are wrong. "I plant my own seeds, till my own soil and harvest my own crops," he says, adding that he has one person helping him with the little nuances as well.
But Raj is doing a lot more than just farming - he is using his intellect and finances to document his journey in a full-length feature film. Titled Bajra vs Burger, Raj presents the simpler life back in the villages. Here, the kids run and play as opposed to getting hypnotised by digital screens; and where working out means sweating it out in the field, rather than in an air-conditioned gym. "I believe the same pay cheque one earns by working a 10-hour day is possible by only working for two hours using sustainable organic farming techniques while living a healthier, quality life," he says.
The film Bajra vs Burger explores a lot of things related to farming apart from exploring the sustainable life that farms provide. Having taken precaution of not making it like a documentary, Raj insists that the film is a fun, comical and educational watch. "With a subject like this, one would assume that the only visual representation there is will be in the form of a documentary," admits Raj, but he is very well aware of how much of an audience documentaries have.
"Documentaries tend to have a certain niche, privileged audience. But, I wanted this film to reach as many people as possible," he says.
What took four years to finish, certainly looks like a fruit of hard work and patience for Raj. "I hope to get done with post-production by January next year. I want it to be the product of a new year," he says.
He also looks forward to hosting multiple screenings. "I want to hold a special screening for farmers, where they can see how much of a difference they make to our worlds. And, I also hope to hold some special screenings for schools - want to show students that there is a lot more, a lot better they can be than just MBA graduates and engineers," he says, hopeful.