Are the characters shown in the RRR movie real? Yes, but most of their on-screen adventures are fiction. The authors loosely mixed some facts, from the revolutionaries’ lives with conjecture and a healthy dose of horse imagination. Well, I guess we don’t have to explain to anyone that no one threw tigers at British soldiers.
Alluri Sitarama Raju
Alluri Seetharama Raju was born in 1897 (according to other sources in 1898). As a young man, he traveled around the country. After dropping out of college, he became interested in religion. Raju began practicing sannyasa, which means giving up materialistic desires and devoting to spiritual meditation. During his travels, he witnessed many atrocities committed by the British. He also became acquainted with the revolutionary movement. Eventually settled in the Visakhapatnam region where he lived among the Manyam tribes. His natural charisma caused him to quickly gain fame and respect. As Raju was an extremely religious person, people began to believe that he possessed superhuman powers and was some sort of messiah. Some of these myths were probably created by Raju himself.
For the tribes under him, the biggest problem was the British jungle regulations. The tribes practiced a technique called podu. Tribe would select an area of jungle, then burn it for farmland. This type of land was fertile and yielded a lot of crops. This disturbed the English, as they preferred to use the wood to build railroads and ships. Public discontent with the harsh regulations led to the Manyama Rebellion (also known as the Rampa Rebellion) in 1922, led by Raju.
Raju’s tactics were based on guerrilla warfare. The leader trained people in fighting techniques with white weapons (bows, spears) and developed methods of simple communication (whistles, beating drums). He and his trained troop ransacked police stations, seizing weapons and ammunition from them. In the movie, a reference to these events is the plan to give every Indian a gun. With each attack, his fame and number of followers grew. The rebel was becoming a folk hero. The British couldn’t catch him because they didn’t know the area, and local residents refused to cooperate. The manhunt lasted two years. On May 7, 1924, Raju was caught and executed by firing squad.
The circumstances of his father’s death, his career in the police, and his grand plan for revenge are the work of fiction.
Komaram Bheem was born in 1900 in the southern Indian village of Sankepalli. The area was the seat of an independent state of Muslim Nizams. The Nizams recognized British sovereignty in exchange for retaining power. Although they were subject to the British, their area retained partial autonomy. Muslim superiors enforced discipline in extremely cruel ways. A minor infraction was punishable by amputation of a limb and death for opposition. This is how Bheem’s father died.
In his youth, Bheem killed a tax collector terrorizing the village. This forced him to escape to Ćandrapur, where he took refuge with a publisher distributing anti-British press. Working at the publishing house was a substitute for education. Bheem learned to read and write English, Hindi and Urdu, as well as learned the basics of law. When his employer was arrested, Bheem fled to Assam, where he worked on a plantation. There he was arrested for participating in a protest.
After escaping from prison (after only four days), Bheem returned to his hometown. He became the village supervisor’s right-hand man. Using his knowledge of languages, he helped in legal disputes. This brought him local fame. At the same time he got married. After some time, he and his wife returned to the Gond tribe (from which he originated) to cultivate the land. There, the situation from his childhood repeated. The Nizams tried to force him to leave the inhabited land, arguing that it belonged to the state. At first Bheem tried to lodge complaints, directly with the Nizam (the region’s ruler), but when these went unanswered, he organized a militia and began a guerrilla war that lasted 12 years. His main demand was to recognize the lands of the Gond tribe as an area independent of the Nizam. His troops were extremely difficult to track, as Bheem was supported by the leaders of at least a dozen local tribes. Eventually, the Nizams hired a paid informant. The result was an ambush prepared in September 1940. Although Bheem’s men were armed only with primitive white weapons (javelins, bows, axes), Bheem refused to surrender and fell in the battle. In the movie, a reference is made in the scene of the death of Raju’s father. The legend claims that the enemies shot at his body until it turned into a shapeless mass, as they feared that Bheem, with the help of sorcery, would return from the afterlife.
Did Bheem and Raju ever meet?
Their paths probably never crossed. By the time Bheem was working on the plantation, the Raju rebellion was already underway, so Bheem must have heard of him, but the chances that they had at least brief contact are very small. It is also known that Bheem was motivated to revolt by the legend of another revolutionary, Ramji Gond.
Are there any other movies about Bheem and Raju?
Both characters in the movie have been portrayed before.
In 1974, the movie “Alluri Seetarama Raju” was released.
In 1990, a work dedicated to Bheem was filmed, entitled “Komaram Bheem.”