Nagpur: Fashion and Corporate fame Bhandarkar is in a celebratory mood now that both the Film Certification board and SC have cleared the decks for his film being released.
His apprehension now is, how will it be received in Pune and Nagpur?
He has said in earlier interviews:
“The kind of atmosphere that was created in Nagpur and Pune — that’s really sad.” protests in both cities.
The film, set against the backdrop of the 1975-77 Emergency, features Neil Nitin Mukesh, Kirti Kulhari and Tota Roy Chaudhary. It also stars Supriya Vinod, Anupam Kher and has characters modelled on the late Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and her younger son Sanjay Gandhi, leading various Congress leaders, to slam it.
The Examining Committee of the CBFC had initially suggested 12 cuts and two disclaimers, including removal of words like RSS and Akali from “Indu Sarkar” — much to the dismay of the National Award winning director who is known for gripping dramas.
At a press conference held on 25 July, Bhandarkar said he feels “sad” that nobody stood by his side from the entertainment industry even when he supported Udta Punjab and Ae Dil Hai Mushkil when these films got mired in controversies during their release.
When Bhandarkar had come to Nagpur to promote the film and hold a press conference, he had tweeted very cheerfully that he was ‘ at the heart of the country’ to promote his latest film. Hours later, another tweet was angrily fired at Rahul Gandhi after his p.c. was disrupted. “Where is my freedom of speech?” He asked.
But why exactly are Congressmen upset with this film, even without seeing it?
Maharashtra Congress leader Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil warned that party workers would hit the streets if the film maligned its leaders. “If our apprehension that history has been distorted is found to be true, it will hurt people’s sentiments. If an attempt has been made to malign the image of Congress leaders, party workers may hit the streets in protest. The CM should intervene to prevent untoward incidents and maintain law and order,” he said.
Priya Singh Paul, who claims to be the biological daughter of late Sanjay Gandhi, had approached the Supreme Court seeking a stay on the release of the film ‘Indu Sarkar’, which is based on the 1975-1977 Emergency period.
Priya alleged that the movie, directed by Madhur Bhandarkar, is ‘full of concocted facts and is totally derogatory’ and it maligns the images of former prime minister Indira Gandhi and her son Sanjay.
Madhur Bhandarkar on the other hand, says he has already added a disclaimer in ‘Indu Sarkar’, stating that the film is mostly fictional. The censor board has granted a U/A certificate to the film after ordering 12 cuts, which has been complied with.
So, if as the Director himself says the movie is mostly fictional, why the name ‘Indu?’
Why the striking resemblance to Indira Gandhi and Sanjay Gandhi of two lead characters?
Either the movie should be true to history and adhere to facts, or remain a complete fiction without defaming someone with look-alike characters and names.
In this charged atmosphere, it could be a dangerous mix – and an irresponsible one.