Legal trouble looms for Toilet - Ek Prem Katha in Mathura’s rural belt

The production unit is filming in Nandgaon, but not much else is known about the film’s story or schedule as they are keeping distance from the media.

bollywood Updated: Nov 18, 2016 15:04 IST
Hemendra Chaturvedi
Hemendra Chaturvedi
Hindustan Times
Akshay Kumar,Bhumi Pednekar,Toilet Ek Prem Katha
Akshay Kumar is playing the lead role in Toilet Ek Prem Katha.

Akshay Kumar-starrer Toilet - Ek Prem Katha, which is being shot in Mathura’s rural belt, may find itself in legal trouble for going against long-held local traditions.

A lawyer has threatened to serve legal notice to the film’s director if the storyline goes against a tradition in the Braj region, wherein people of Nandgaon aren’t allowed to marry people from Barsana.

“Lord Krishna was a resident of Nandgaon and Radha, his beloved, was from Barsana and their ‘pious love’ is depicted during Holi festival organised every year. The tradition not to have marriages between boys and girls from these two villages continues,” explained lawyer Gokalesh Katara.

The production unit is filming in Nandgaon, but not much else is known about the film’s story or schedule as they are keeping their distance from the media.

However, locals got whiff of the plot from a scene shot in which the line “Nandgaon ka chhora and Barsana ki chhori (boy from Nandgaon and girl from Barsana)” was used.

“There had been scenes of a baraat moving from a school premises. Based on media reports, we have come to know that the story somehow revolves around marriage links between Nandgaon and Barsana villages of Mathura,” Katara said.

“There is a population of about 200 Muslims in Nandgaon and about 1,000 Muslims in Barsana but they too have been cooperative enough to maintain this tradition and don’t have inter-village marriages.”

Katara, who said he did not know the story of the film, said “if the movie depicts marriage between people of Nandgaon and Barsana, a legal notice would be served to the director of movie for hurting sentiments of people from these two villages”.

“We would ask the makers of the movie to provide us the script and then only a decision to proceed legally would begin,” he added. “The title of the movie also seems to be objectionable.”

Priests in the two villages have also reportedly raised their voice against the movie and called a mahapanchayat to discuss their future course of action. Residents of nearby villages too were summoned to ensure that their long-held traditions are not violated by the filmmakers.

Ajay Kumar Awasthi, ADM (execution), Mathura, said he learned about the matter only from the media but was not privy to the details.

“We had been busy with the governor’s programme and as such no one came to meet us today,” he said, adding that “there are sufficient security arrangements for the film unit shooting in the rural belt of Mathura.”

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First Published: Nov 18, 2016 13:59 IST