Amidst fresh reports of Youth Congress workers in UP and MP threatening to stall the release of The Accidental Prime Minister, the co-producer of the movie, filmmaker and social activist, Ashoke Pandit has slammed the Congress party for projecting the film as a BJP propaganda, “I think this is a totally immature and laughable response from the Congress. The whole country very well knows that the film is based on a book written by Sanjay Barua, who was a Congress man himself. Are they trying to take away the credit from Barua by opposing the film? Also it is a well-known fact that the film depicts the journey of Manmohan Singh and ho w he was treated during his tenure by the Gandhi family,” Ashoke Pandit said.
Pandit also questioned leaders of the Congress some of whom mentioned Anupam Kher as a “BJP stooge” because of the latter’s vocal support for Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his party, “How can they stoop so low? Anupam Kher’s choice of roles has nothing to do with his political ideology. He is one of the biggest icons of the country; he is free to choose the role that appeals most to him, knowing his acting caliber. He has a track record of more than 500 films and is a Padmashri and Padmavibhushan awardee. He is a teacher, professor and a former CBFC chairperson besides FTII chairperson. He is also a writer and opinion maker and all that he has achieved so far is entirely on his own merit. How can they take away all his hard work by passing such a frivolous remark?” he asked,
“How can they stoop so low? Anupam Kher’s choice of roles has nothing to do with his political ideology. He is one of the biggest icons of the country”
According to Pandit, the people who were raising questions about the film being politically motivated were forgetting that it also had people on board who were known to be staunch BJP critics, “They should also know that the creative director of the film is Hansal Mehta. We all know the lineage of Hansal Mehta, his opinion on Narendra Modi and BJP.
Likewise the producer of the film is Sunil Bohra, who produced the 2013 film Shahid, based on slain lawyer, Shahid Azmi, “The hero of the film was a defense lawyer who defended people on the wrong side of the law. Bohra hails from the well-known family of filmmaker Shriram Bohra and has also produced films like Gangs of Wasseypur and Tanu Weds Manu. Are they questioning his lineage?” Pandit said, adding that every filmmaker was free to follow a political ideology, “In cinema when we conceive an idea every individual has a right to follow a particular opinion, leader or concept in politics. That doesn’t mean it is propaganda or anti-propaganda,” he added.
Meanwhile the Maharashtra Youth Congress has withdrawn its demand for a special screening of the film, which it had earlier insisted upon, “As BJP has tweeted the trailer of the movie from their official twitter handle, it is now evident that it is BJP’s propaganda/campaign movie. Hence we don’t even want to see this BJP’s campaign movie,” the Maharashtra Youth Congress President Satyajeet Tambe-Patil tweeted. “It is an indicator that the Congress has now got cold feet. It has gone on its back foot realizing that it is giving the film further publicity by protesting against it. They have decided that they would rather be silent on it,” Pandit said.
The Accidental Prime Minister is a political biopic based on former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh. The film is based on a book of the same name written by Sanjay Baru, who was Singh’s media advisor from 2004 to 2008. The film which is due for release has been in the eye of a storm after the BJP shared the trailer on its twitter handle with the caption, “Riveting tale of how a family held the country to ransom for 10 long years.”