Hindu-Muslim love story set against Babri backdrop sends UP cops into a tizzy | bollywood | Hindustan Times
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Hindu-Muslim love story set against Babri backdrop sends UP cops into a tizzy

Uttar Pradesh police have issued an alert over the forthcoming release of a Hindi movie about a love story between a Hindu youth and a Muslim girl and set in the backdrop of the Babri mosque demolition, an official said on Tuesday.

Padmavati Row Updated: Nov 21, 2017 18:08 IST
Manish Chandra Pandey
Manish Chandra Pandey
Hindustan Times
Game of Ayodhya,Babri,Padmavati
The alert comes in the wake of the Padmavati protests.

Uttar Pradesh police have issued an alert over the forthcoming release of a Hindi movie about a love story between a Hindu youth and a Muslim girl and set in the backdrop of the Babri mosque demolition, an official said on Tuesday.

The movie, Game of Ayodhya, was cleared by the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT) after the censor board refused to allow its release. No release dates have been announced yet.

The development comes in amid heightened tension in the state over the Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s yet-to-released film Padmavati which has angered the Rajput community across the country.

The BJP, the ruling party in UP as well as the Centre, is seen as backing the protests against alleged distortion of history and portrayal of the former queen of Mewar in bad light.

A senior police official said the director general of police has issued an alert to all district police chiefs to be watchful around the time the movie is released in the state.

“There is a view that the film could enrage passions after its release and hence we have to be watchful,” the officer told HT.

The trailer of the film, which stars Makrand Despande in a lead role, featured some actual speeches made by political leaders before the Mughal-era mnosque was demolished by a Hindu mob on December 6, 1992.

“We are generally aware of the movies set for release well in advance. This isn’t in our list so far,” the Delhi-based distributor told HT on phone.

The Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) had refused to give the film a green signal on the grounds that the “subject of the temple-mosque dispute was provocative, had defamed individuals, and had the potential to stoke communal passions”.

After the FCAT clearance earlier this month, director Sunil Singh said in a statement that the film is “full of entertainment and will also educate about how the fateful day in 1992 changed the lives of many”. Singh also plays a role in the film.

It is still not clear if the UP police would allow an all-India release of the movie or go for selective release like in the case of the film ‘Muzaffarnagar – A Burning Love’.

The movie was released on Friday across the state except for western UP districts -- Muzaffarnagar, Shamli, Saharanpur, Bijnor, Baghpat and Meerut. However, there is no administrative order banning it from being screened in west UP.

The 2013 riots of Muzaffarnagar left several dead and displaced hundreds of people, affected voting patterns and allagedly led to communal polarisation ahead of the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.

On Sunday, when the movie was being screened in Novelty theatre in Muzaffarnagar, police halted it midway. The film’s producer, Manoj Mandi, was present.

Police justified their intervention and claimed that they had information about the movie being screened without permission.

“Another movie is GST, set for November 24 release. But barring the title of the film, which is an abbreviation of Galti Saari Tumhari, the film has nothing to do with GST. Still there are apprehensions in some quarters,” a person associated with film trade said.

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First Published: Nov 21, 2017 12:29 IST