Director: V. Damle, S. Fattelal, Raja Nene; Writer: Shivram Vashikar, P.L. Santoshi; Cinematographer: V. Avadhoot, E. Mohammed; Cast: Hansa Wadkar, Gauri, Shankar Kulkarni, Shanta Majumdar, Sumitra, Master Chhotu, Ganpatrao, Khadilkar, Samant
Summary: The only woman-centred Saint film at Prabhat with Wadkar in the classic role of Sakhu, a Marathi Saint poet whose existence is mainly legendary as opposed to the better-documented male ones. She is depicted as a devoutly religious woman married to a weak husband (Kulkarni) and oppressed by her cruel mother-in-law Mhalsakaku (Gauri) and sister- in-law Durga (Majumdar). Recognition comes at the end of the film through a series of miracles (including the classic scene where she is tied to a pillar, her disembodied death and reincarnation). Unlike the directors’ earlier and better-known films in the genre, this was mainly a family melodrama. The celebratory power of the genre only appears sporadically, e.g. the pilgrims walking to Pandharpur. Unusually, the mandatory miracle scenes were integrated into the plot (instead of merely illustrating saintly power), esp. at the end when the ‘real’ Sakhu confronts her divine stand-in to confuse everyone in the village and to attract charges of being a ghost. The bizarre publicity included stills showing convoys of military vehicles captioned ‘What leads an army - Faith’.