Delegation that went to Pahlaj Nihalani demanding that screenings of Indu Sarkar be stalled
Delegation that went to Pahlaj Nihalani demanding that screenings of Indu Sarkar be stalled

Even in the world of make-believe, the politics doesn't end. So no surprise that when the Congress' women's wing demanded that the Censor Board stall the screening of Madhur Bhandarkar's next Indu Sarkar - reportedly a fictionalised look at the Indira Gandhi government during the Emergency - the Censor Board chief, Pahlaj Nihalani, refused to budge and told party workers that the film was a work of fiction.

However, owning to Nihalani's public BJP bent, the group raged that the Censor chief was acting as the ruling government's agent. Meanwhile, Nihalani is reported to have barred them from taking pictures and filming the meet on Monday after it turned hostile.

Questions intent
Speaking to mid-day, Mumbai women's Congress chief Neelam Mhatre said she suspected Nihalani and Bhandarkar were both attempting to "please the BJP for Rajya Sabha nominations".

"When we questioned that if the film was fiction, why did the promos show such close likeness of late Indira Gandhi and Sanjay Gandhi with a prominent mention of the Emergency, he (Nihalani) did not have any answer. I strongly believe that he and Bhandarkar are hand-in-glove with the BJP," she added.

"Once again, the BJP's vindictive nature is reflected here. Instead of banning a film that shows our ex-PM in a negative shade, the BJP government has provided security to Bhandarkar. The BJP seems to be building glory on selfish principles," Mhatre said.

Not the first attempt
Interestingly, this is not the Congress' first attempt at stalling the film's release. Earlier, Mumbai Congress chief Sanjay Nirupam had also petitioned Nihalani to hold a special pre-release screening for the party, but failed to get anywhere with it.