After BJP lauds ‘The Accidental Prime Minister’, Congress terms it ‘saffron party’s campaign film’

New Delhi: The trailer of The Accidental Prime Minister, which shows former prime minister Manmohan Singh as a victim of the Congress’ internal politics ahead of the 2014 general elections, was released on Thursday. The trailer shows veteran actor Anupam Kher in a very realistic portrayal of the 86-year-old who ruled India from 2004 to 2014.

The BJP’s official Twitter handle shared a link of the trailer, which eventually opened up the Pandora’s box to a political controversy.

Congress leaders have slammed the The Accidental Prime Minister, saying it is BJP’s propaganda against their party, as the film has sparked a row over alleged distortion of facts.

The same day, Maharashtra Youth Congress chief Satyajeet Tambe had written to the film’s producer, Bloom Art PTE’s Sunil Arora, demanding a special screening before the movie hit the screens as well as “course correction” in case there was any distortion in the way events of the time were depicted in the film.

However, the Congress-led government in Madhya Pradesh said on Friday that it has not banned the film.

BJP’s defence:

BJP IT cell chief Amit Malviya told a private TV channel, “The film is based on the works of Sanjaya Baru, who was media advisor to Dr Manmohan Singh.” Malviya also tweeted saying: “Why does Congress want to censor a film when the book it is based on was published way back in April 2014? Just because fewer people read books than watch a movie? Where are the champions of free speech and expression? Stand up for artistic freedom,” he wrote.

Following Congress’s attack on the BJP after it lauded the trailer of the film, Union minister Rajyavardhan Rathore on Friday asked whether his party doesn’t even have the freedom to extend wishes to a film. Rathore told reporters: “Can’t we extend our wishes for a film? Congress has been all for freedom, why is it questioning that freedom now?”

Tambe withdraw’s demand

After BJP’s reaction, Tambe tweeted on Friday withdrawing the demand, “As BJP has tweeted trailer of #TheAccidentalPrimeMinister 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 campaign movie of BJP and we withdraw our demand of special screening (sic).”

Meanwhile, when Dr Manmohan Singh was asked about his opinion on the film, he paused before the mics, but moved away without a word.

Directed by Vijay Ratnakar Gutte, the film stars Anupam Kher as Manmohan Singh and Akshaye Khanna as Baru and is scheduled to release in theatres on January 11. The film is based on the book of the same name by Sanjay Baru who served as Singh’s media adviser from 2004 to 2008.