A Bengali film modelled on controversial Asian Games gold medallist Pinki Pramanik, with references to homosexuality, is set to release in West Bengal next month.
Debutant filmmaker Raja Banerjee hopes it will spread the message that perseverance and hard work can overcome hurdles.
Christened "She?", the biopic delves into the obstacles faced by Pramanik, against whom the police drew up a charge sheet in 2012, following a complaint from her former live-in partner that she was "actually a male" who had raped her repeatedly.
However, the Calcutta High Court acquitted the athlete of all charges last year.
"There is no direct reference to Pramanik. Our character modelled on the athlete is called Rinki (played by actor Kamalika Chanda). We have charted her journey right from Purulia to her days in Kolkata and the incidents that gave rise to the controversies," Banerjee told IANS.
According to Banerjee, the athlete didn't approve of certain portions such as the part that shows hints of a lesbian relationship.
"There is a just a hint of such a relationship. Its ends on a positive note with her successful career. So, the message is a positive one and Pinki is the hero of the film," Banerjee said, adding the idea took shape in 2012 and the media reports were studied for research.
Spanning two hours, the film will be released in 32 to 35 theatres across Bengal with English subtitles on June 5.