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Raajneeti faces lawsuit

A social worker has moved court claiming that the film defames politician Sonia Gandhi’s image.

india Updated: May 13, 2010 15:32 IST
Hiren Kotwani
Hiren Kotwani
Hindustan Times

Ever since photographs of a sari-clad Katrina Kaif in Raajneeti appeared in the media, there seems to be no end to reports that her character is based on Sonia Gandhi. Never mind if director Prakash Jha and the actress have continuously denied any inspiration from the Congress leader.

The latest is that the filmmaker has been slapped with a lawsuit from a social worker claiming that the political drama defames Mrs Gandhi. Naseem Khan, a social worker, has moved the Mumbai Civil Court, seeking a ban on the film. His petition alleges that Kaif’s role is based on Sonia Gandhi’s life and Jha should not malign her (Mrs Gandhi) by showing her (Kaif) in intimate scenes. The scenes that Khan is objecting to are filmed with Kaif and Ranbir Kapoor.

Fictional story
On his part, Jha denies that Kaif’s character and her story are based on Sonia Gandhi. “From the onset, I’ve been saying that it’s a fictional story and bears no resemblance to any person living or dead,” he says, adding, “Raajneeti is the story of a family and about the politics of gaining power.”

However, he does agree that Mrs Gandhi has led a very inspiring life. “Soniaji’s life is an inspiration for many, but not for the character I’ve written for Katrina. I hope these rumours are laid to rest now,” he sighs. Reportedly, the court has adjourned the hearing till June 10, while the film is scheduled to release in cinemas on June 4. It is believed that the court will decide on the case after considering the censor report.

Sources associated with Raajneeti tell us that the movie will be censored in another few days, and are certain that the release won’t be deffered. Declining to comment, since the matter is subjudice, all Jha is willing to say is: “Our lawyers are handling the case appropriately. Let the law take its own natural course.”

But when asked if anyone from the Congress has asked him to show Raajneeti to Sonia Gandhi, Jha replies, “No one has asked me yet. But if Soniaji wants to see the film, I have no problem with that.”

First Published: May 13, 2010 14:36 IST