In the wake of a demand to ban the soon-to-be-released film "Shorgul", which is loosely based on the 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots, its makers feel it would have been better had the film industry come out in their support.
Controversial BJP leader Sangeet Som from Uttar Pradesh has demanded a ban on the screening of the riot-themed movie in certain parts of that state saying that its contents could disturb the social harmony and create communal tension.
The film is a political thriller directed by Pranav K Singh and Jitentra Tiwari and produced by 24 FPS film Pvt Ltd. It stars Jimmy Shergill, Suha Gezen, Ashutosh Rana, Narendra Jha, Anirudh Dave and Sanjay Suri in the lead roles.
When asked if the makers are sad due to the lack of support from Bollywood, Hiten Tejwani, one of the actors in the film, told reporters, "Had there been support (for the film), it would've been very good. We would've been very very happy.
"There are many reasons why they support or don't. Maybe they think this film is not worth it. It's their thinking. We are not big shots yet," Hiten said.
Recently, many Bollywood actors had come out in support of "Udta Punjab", when it was caught in a censorship row that snowballed into a political controversy. Shashie Verma, creative director of the film, echoed similar sentiment and said the lack of prominent names backing the film "could be one of the reasons" for not many Bollywod personalities coming out in support.
"We are not upset. But had they (Bollywood) supported us, it would've been better... Even 'Udta Punjab' had to go through this despite very prominent people being involved in it," he said.
"We tried from our side (to seek help), but I won't name anyone. No one has come forward yet," Verma added.
Verma alleged that BJP MLA Sangeet Som is trying to gain political mileage by seeking a ban on the film and said the government had no hand in trying to stop "Shorgul" from release.
"It's not about the government. If it was, our film would not have got the Censor certificate. The film has been passed without any troubles. Some people want to gain political publicity through this film.
"Sangeet Som is a very respectful man. He is an MLA. As a politician, it is your duty to serve people, but if you say that this film has been made to tarnish a particular individual's image, then that is wrong," he said.
Som, the BJP MLA from Meerut's Sardhana seat, is an accused in the 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots case.
Swatantra Vijay Singh, one of the producers of "Shorgul", said they have contacted the chief minister of UP Akhilesh Yadav to resolve the issue.
"We did contact the CM house and wrote to them about the issue. They assured us that you've made the film with a lot of hard work so you release the film, we will do all that we can from our side."
"Shorgul" is set to release on July 1.