P.O.W. - Bandi Yuddh Ke
P.O.W-Bandi Yuddh Ke poster.jpg
First poster
Based onHatufim
Written by
Directed by
Nikkhil Advani

Gauravv K Chawla Kaashvi Nair

  • Nikhil Gonsalves
Theme music composerArjunna Harjaie
Opening themeArjunna Harjaie
Country of originIndia
Original languageHindi


No. of seasons1
No. of episodes110[1]
  • Monisha Advani
  • Madhu G Bhojwani
Running time20–29 min
Production companyEmmay Entertainment
DistributorKeshet International
Original networkStar Plus
Picture format576i
1080i (HDTV)
Original release7 November 2016 (2016-11-07) –
15 March 2017 (2017-03-15)

P.O.W. - Bandi Yuddh Ke is an Indian political thriller television series developed by Nikkhil Advani,[2] and is loosely based on the Israeli drama Hatufim.[3] The series premiered 7 November 2016 on Star Plus.[4] The show was featured at MAMI film fest followed by a talk with Gideon Raff, who developed Hatufim for Keshet and served as a consultant for this series.[5][3][6][7] It went off-air after four months of its launch due to due to low viewership.[8] The show streams on the Indian OTT platform MX Player.[9]

Plot summary

After seventeen years in captivity, two soldiers, who seem to share a dark secret, return to their families. The two families try to pick up where they left off, while a government agent tries to expose their dark secret. Meanwhile, the POWs try to acclimatise to the environment that they left 17 years ago. The government agent tries several methods to expose these POWs but ends up in trouble.




Star Plus approached Nikkhil Advani after watching his latest film D-Day, to direct a show based on the similar plotline on their channel. Star Plus had him watch both Hatufim and its American counterpart Homeland. Advani sought to make a show like Hatufim since he thought a show like Homeland would not suite Indian's sensibilities.[14]

The budget of the series was ₹35 crores, and was shot in 90 locations along with about 150 crew members and with a budget of ₹27 Lakh per episode.[15] The series was planned as a finite one for 126 episodes.[15] However, due to very less viewership, it ended with 110 episodes.[16]


Advani decided to rope in Amrita Puri, Purab Kohli,[17][18] Satyadeep Misra, Manish Chaudhary and Sandhya Mridul – the former debuting on the small screen and the latter returning on the small screen after a hiatus of two years.[19] Sahil Salathia, Anurag Sinha and Parul Gulati make a major entry post Episode 60 in the series as the further story unveils. Theater actor Abhishek Gupta plays RAW officer Santosh and Lala (Rashid Jamaal) is played by Denzil Smith in the series.[20]


Arjunna Harjaie made his television debut with this show. He composed all the music tracks, background score, soundtrack, and also sung some songs except the title track.[21]

Critical reception

Gursimran Kaur Bangal of The Times of India said "The show has managed to hold us all through the three episodes aired so far. The narrative is gripping and stirs you emotionally. It keeps you glued to what will happen next. This one is not to be missed!"[22] Anvita Singh of India Today praised the show's unique plot, strong female characters, actors and the good cliffhanger.[23] Mid-Day has compared the show with its American counterpart and considered that while it aids in etching the underlying theme of the series, the treatment given to the two adaptations are significantly distanced from one another.[24] The Quint stated that the reunion scene of two prisoners could have been shown separately instead of showing both simultaneously in a single frame. It reviewed, "The new mega show of Star Plus, P.O.W.- Bandi Yuddh Ke lies somewhere between the ambition of cinema to be restrained and the dimness of television to be understood. It chugs along well with occasional attempts of expansive frames, overhead shots, and an enlightened understanding of relationships till the key scene - which quite honestly, disappoints."[25]

The show also won several awards including Jury award for best Asian show at Seoul International drama awards and for its promotion and music at the Abby. It also had 12 nominations at the ITA awards, winning in categories such as: Best Drama-Jury, Best Actor-Jury (Purab Kohli), Best Actor in a Negative Role (Denzil Smith).


  1. ^ Jamkhandikar, Shilpa. "POW: Indian adaptation of thriller 'Hatufim' hopes to break new ground". Reuters. Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  2. ^ IANS (3 October 2016). "'P.O.W.' equal to 22 films: Nikkhil Advani". Business Standard India. Retrieved 8 April 2021.
  3. ^ a b PTIdate=25 October 2016. "Gideon Raff: I am worried whenever 'Prisoners of War' is remade". The Times of India. Retrieved 25 October 2016.
  4. ^ "B-Town: Nikkhil Advani raising the bar on TV". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 24 September 2016. Retrieved 24 September 2016.
  5. ^ Goswami, Parismita (26 October 2016). "P.O.W-Bandi Yuddh Ke: Purab Kohli's TV series becomes first show to be premiered at MAMI". IBTimes. Retrieved 8 April 2021.
  6. ^ Maneck, Ankita (30 October 2016). "Hatufim creator Gideon Raff talks POW: Bandi Yudh Ke, Homeland, remakes and research". Firstpost. Retrieved 30 October 2016.
  7. ^ Schneider, Michael (24 October 2016). "'Homeland' Was Just the Beginning, as Gideon Raff's 'Prisoners of War' Inspires More Shows Globally". IndieWire. Retrieved 24 October 2016.
  8. ^ Keshri, Shweta (20 June 2017). "Jaat Ki Jugni to Koi Laut Ke Aaya Hai: 5 shows that died untimely death". India Today. Retrieved 22 November 2021.
  9. ^ "P.O.W. Bandi Yuddh Ke". MX PLayer. Retrieved 22 November 2021.
  10. ^ IANS (28 October 2016). "How Amrita Puri struggled after shooting P.O.W.- Bandi Yuddh Ke". NDTV. Retrieved 28 October 2016.
  11. ^ IANS (5 November 2016). "Tough to understand the trauma of wives of war heroes". The Times of India. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
  12. ^ Rathi, Vasundhara (12 November 2016). "Playing on contrast". The Hindu. Retrieved 12 November 2016.
  13. ^ Razzaq, Sameena (12 November 2016). "Aditi is my closest friend: Satyadeep Mishra". Deccan Chronicle. Retrieved 12 November 2016.
  14. ^ Kaushik, Divya (23 September 2016). "Nikhil Advani: My show is not an adaptation of 'Homeland'. That kind of show won't work in India". The Times of India. Retrieved 23 September 2016.
  15. ^ a b Mathew, Suresh (2 December 2016). "'POW - Bandi Yuddh Ke' Struggles to Find Its Audience". TheQuint. Retrieved 24 August 2020.
  16. ^ Keshri, Shweta (21 March 2017). "P.O.W. - Bandi Yuddh Ke to Jeannie Aur Juju: Foreign TV adaptations that failed to impress". India Today. Retrieved 24 August 2020.
  17. ^ "Purab Kohli goes raw for Nikhil Advani's show". The Times of India. 12 September 2016. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
  18. ^ "Purab Kohli didn't want to do daily soaps after 'Hip Hip Hurray'". The Times of India. 29 January 2017. Retrieved 3 October 2017.
  19. ^ Singh, Anvita (4 September 2016). "Amrita Puri to play the lead role in Indian remake of Homeland?". India Today. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  20. ^ "Star Plus' P.O.W- Bandi Yuddh Ke gets 3 new faces". The Times of India. 17 January 2017. Retrieved 8 April 2021.
  21. ^ "Arjuna Harjai: Making music for Nikhil Advani's TV show is a lot of fun!". The Times of India. 5 November 2016. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
  22. ^ Banga, Gursimran Kaur (10 November 2016). "Review: P.O.W. - Bandi Yuddh Ke strikes a chord with its engaging content". The Times of India. Retrieved 8 April 2021.
  23. ^ "P.O.W. – Bandi Yuddh Ke Review: Nikkhil Advani's powerful show might set new standards for Indian television". India Today. Retrieved 8 November 2016.
  24. ^ "'POW: Bandi Yuddh Ke' is 'Homeland' with more heart". Mid-Day. 9 November 2016. Retrieved 9 November 2016.
  25. ^ Mazumder, Ranjib (7 November 2016). "Review: 'POW - Bandi Yuddh Ke' Shows Promise But On Shaky Ground". TheQuint. Retrieved 24 August 2020.