Republic (film)

Republic is a 2021 Indian Telugu-language political drama film written and directed by Deva Katta, and produced by JB Entertainments and Zee Studios. The film stars Sai Tej, Aishwarya Rajesh, Jagapathi Babu and Ramya Krishna. The plot follows Panja Abhiram (Tej), an IAS officer who tackles the corruption in the political system and the administrative machinery.

Republic film.jpg
Official release poster
Directed byDeva Katta
Screenplay byDeva Katta
Kiran Jay Kumar
Story byDeva Katta
Produced byJ. Bhagawan
J. Pullarao
CinematographyM. Sukumar
Edited byPraveen K. L.
Music byMani Sharma
JB Entertainments
Zee Studios
Distributed byZee Studios
Release date
  • 1 October 2021 (2021-10-01)

Principal photography of the film began in mid-2020 and ended in February 2021, after being briefly suspended by the COVID-19 pandemic. Mani Sharma scored the film while the cinematography and editing are performed by M. Sukumar and Praveen K. L. respectively. Republic was released theatrically on 1 October 2021.


In 1970, Telleru Lake is one of the biggest fresh water lakes in India which is a pivotal lake for fishing and farming. Over a span of 40 years, the lake has been built on fishing farms mainly owned by Visakha Vani while simultaneously polluting the lake alongside.

The story shifts to Panja Abhiram who is a smart and impious youth from Eluru that likes society to be truthful and honest after experiencing corruption within his own family with his father Dashrath being a corrupt government official which causes him to dislike his father. With his high scoring in various exams, he gets a seat at MIT. However, due to his father participating in an election rig, he decides to dive more into the political system to change it.

He simultaneously meets Myra Hansen who is an NRI trying to search for her missing brother Varun who is known to have had an interaction with a local goon named Guna. Founding new party and made clean sweep in the election with, Visakha Vani becomes her son Indukri Vishnu Vardhan as the next Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh gained an image of kingmaker. He then meets Mani, an auto driver, and his father trying to fight for justice against Visakha Vani.

Meanwhile, Abhi and Myra come to know that Varun has been found dead but they do not get any support from the police leaving it to a dead end. After passing the UPSC exam, Abhi heads to his interview but after a PTSD episode on the train he ends up seeing Mani killed by Guna who is under Visakha Vani's orders. Abhi after seeing all of this heads to his interview but ends up not getting selected due to his mentality. However, a few days later he ends up getting the job as the District Collector. He then finds out that he was selected by the UPSC board as an experiment of implementing him as the supreme authority of the district and that he can not interfere with any politician in the state.

After he starts his job, he sets out to try and find Guna who has an encounter order against him and they manage to kill him. However, at the same spot, they find Myra unconscious. Abhi rushes them to the hospital to find that Myra has been brutally raped and is close to being killed by Guna due to Varun's research. He then enquires about the children to find out that they have died and have still not been found. Abhi filled with rage decides to address the media that the system is why things are occurring like this. He gets the video evidence of Varun and finds out about how Varun is a neurological professor and doctor. The story then dives into a flashback on how Varun's wife dies of a neurological disease that was caused by the fish in Telleru Lake. He then sees more people affected and plans to research what happened and comes to the conclusion that it was contaminated by Visakha Vani's fish farms. Enraged Abhi gets his father and the health officer both suspended for faking reports about the lake.

Abhi with this information visits Visakha Vani in order to come to an understanding by removing her farms and all the construction on the lake. Visakha Vani tries to understand him that by telling her journey he cannot make any change in the society, earlier being a daughter of a socialist she used to be like him, during the emergency she lost her father and husband then she understood that how much did you tries to change the system it won't change then she adapted the system later. However, Vani sides with the fisherman by stating that they will all be stakeholders in her farms and gets them to turn against Abhi.

Abhi in an attempt to get both sides to go against Vani calls upon a meeting but ends up being very violent causing multiple lives to be lost. With this all happening, the UPSC board suspends Abhi from his post. Later Visakha Vani party had joins in the central government who opposed earlier to stop legal allegations on her. This situations Abhi understands and frustrated more for using him as a political tool by a central party to get Visakha Vani comes into their alley. However, due to this his father also gets into trouble with the villagers causing him to get beat up. Abhi saves his father and in a flashback, it is known that Dashrath was a very sincere officer but due to his sincerity he gets transferred to multiple states which also causes Dashrath's wife and daughter to be killed which ultimately makes Dashrath adapt to the system and to become corrupt.

Abhi and Dashrath team up and they decide to appeal to the court with all of the proper evidence. The High Court Justice Narasimham inspired by the final hearing of Abhiram despite having lot of pressure from the state and central level politicians he stands for the justice and gets Visakha Vani, Vijay Kumar, and Dashrath removed from their posts and gives them life sentences. The Supreme Court also orders for all construction from the lake to be demolished at once. With this outcome, Vani becomes hospitalized and tells Abhi that no matter how much he tries the system won't change.

However, a few days later, he finds construction starting again on the lake and confronts the villagers on why they chose to do it. They state that his caste ruled for 40 years but it is now their turn to rule but Abhi ultimately ends up gaining support from Mani's father. Soon though, Abhi is found by himself at the edge of the forest by Mani's father and his gang and is ultimately killed by them because they want the lake for themselves. This also prompts Vani to commit suicide and throws the entire state of Andhra Pradesh into distress. The movie ends off with sincere officers that were killed in a similar way for what they have done for society.



The film was launched in early 2020 and filming began in mid-2020. Due to COVID-19 pandemic, the filming was paused and later resumed in December 2020.[1] Nivetha Pethuraj was earlier cast for the film, who was later replaced by Aishwarya Rajesh.[2][3] The film's title was announced 25 January 2021.[4] The film was shot for 64 days and completed the shoot in February 2021.[5] Tej started dubbing for his character in June 2021.[6]


Soundtrack album by
Released6 September 2021 (2021-09-06)
GenreFeature film soundtrack
LabelZee Music Company
ProducerMani Sharma
Mani Sharma chronology
Singles from Republic
  1. "Gaana of Republic"
    Released: 10 July 2021
  2. "Jor Se"
    Released: 6 September 2021
1."Gaana of Republic"RahmanAnurag Kulkarni, Dhanunjay, Hymath Mohammed, Aditya Iyengar, Prudhvi Chandra4:11
2."Jor Se"Suddala Ashok TejaAnurag Kulkarni, Saaki Srinivas, Barimisetty4:39
Total length:8:50


In early 2021, the makers announced the film would release on 4 June 2021.[7] However, due to the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in India, the film's release was postponed.[citation needed] In August 2021, the film's release date was announced to be as 1 October 2021.[8]


Calling it "Outstanding," Srinivas Kanchobhotla of opined that Republic was not merely a film but a "social treatise about the systemic malaise."[9]

Reviewing the character of Abhiram in the film, Subhash K Jha said, "He is one of the truest heroes I’ve seen in any film in any language in recent times."[10]

Ram Venkat Srikar of Cinema Express called it "well-crafted" and wrote: "Republic is a smart construction on the idea of corruption and how its repercussions seep into the lives of innocents." He added that the writing is strong and coherent. Srikar drew comparisons with Alan J. Pakula's The Parallax View (1974) as in the conflict in both films, encircles a water body and mysterious disappearances.[11]

In his review for the Hindustan Times, Haricharan Pudipeddi said: "Tej is aptly cast, and he gets ample scope and screen time to shine and deliver a strong performance."[12]

Calling it an "intense political drama," Neeshita Nyayapati of The Times of India rated the film 3/5. Nyayapati appreciated the performances writing, "Tej gives the film and the character his all [..] Ramya Krishnan is delicious as the baddie, a woman who will smile in your face even as she plots your fate."[13]

The Hindu critic Sangeetha Devi Dundoo termed it a "gripping political drama doesn’t take an escapist entertainment route." She opined that the film’s strength lied in its grey characters.[14]

Appreciating the performances of Tej, Ramya and Aishwarya, Prakash Pecheti of Telangana Today stated: "Republic surely adds a cap in the feather for Sai Dharam Tej."[15]

Reveiwing the film for The New Indian Express, Gabbeta Raniith Kumar said that Katta presented Republic as a cautionary tale reminding the audience of the importance of citizen activism, criticism and constant vigilance to protect the sanctity of democracy.[16]


  1. ^ Telugu360 (24 December 2020). "Sai Dharam Tej's next film launched". Retrieved 2 February 2021.
  2. ^ "Aishwarya Rajessh replaces Nivetha Pethuraj in SDT 14". The New Indian Express. Retrieved 2 February 2021.
  3. ^ Balachandran, Logesh (31 October 2020). "Aishwarya Rajesh to replace Nivetha Pethuraj in Sai Dharam Tej's upcoming film". India Today. Retrieved 2 February 2021.
  4. ^ "Revealed: The title of Sai Dharam Tej and Deva Katta's next is Republic". The Times of India. Retrieved 2 February 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  5. ^ "It's a wrap for Sai Dharam Tej starrer Republic". The Indian Express. 23 February 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  6. ^ "Sai Dharam Tej commences dubbing for Deva Katta's Republic". The Times of India. Retrieved 11 July 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  7. ^ "Sai Dharam Tej : సుప్రీం హీరో సాయితేజ్ దేవాకట్టా రిపబ్లిక్ రిలీజ్ డేట్‌ ఫిక్స్." News18 Telugu. 2 February 2021. Retrieved 2 February 2021.
  8. ^ "Sai Dharam Tej and Aishwarya Rajesh starrer Republic gets a release date". The Times of India. 15 August 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  9. ^ "Some ramblings about Republic by Srinivas Kanchibhotla". 10 October 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  10. ^ "Republic movie review: Republic is not a movie, it is a movement". Bollywood News. 1 October 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  11. ^ "Republic Movie Review: An engaging critique on corruption". The New Indian Express. 1 October 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  12. ^ "Republic review: Sai Dharam Tej delivers hard-hitting drama about corruption". Hindustan Times. 1 October 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  13. ^ "Republic Movie Review : An intense political drama that makes you think". The Times of India. 1 October 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  14. ^ Dundoo, Sangeetha Devi (1 October 2021). "'Republic' movie review: A silver lining wouldn't hurt". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X.
  15. ^ "Review: 'Republic', feather in Sai Dharam Tej's cap". Telangana Today. 1 October 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  16. ^ "Republic movie review: Deva Katta, Sai Dharam Tej deliver a cautionary tale". The Indian Express. 1 October 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)

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