Gunjan Saxena on her biopic: I was lucky to have people around me who supported me

Updated: 14 August, 2020 07:50 IST | Agencies | Mumbai

Amid news of Indian Air Force being miffed with makers of Janhvi-starrer Gunjan Saxena, film's muse clears air on the treatment meted out in the organisation.

Days after the Indian Air Force (IAF) raised objection to the presentation of gender bias in the film, Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl, former IAF pilot Gunjan Saxena, on whose life the film is based, has opened up about her experience at the Air Force. She also compared it with how it has been portrayed in the commercial film, which sees Janhvi Kapoor (as Saxena) face discrimination for being a woman.

"It is the training and strong ethos of the Indian Air Force that gave me the courage to do all those extraordinary things that I did. [It is also] the driving force behind all the women officers who have served, or are still serving in this organisation," says Saxena.

While Sharan Sharma's film has been earning praise from critics and cinephiles alike, it drew the ire of the IAF for showcasing male officers bullying Saxena. On Wednesday, it was revealed that IAF had written a letter to Dharma Productions, Netflix and the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC), raising objections to it, and said certain scenes and dialogues portray the IAF in "negative light".

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Saxena alludes that though the film "creatively tried to capture my story", she says "doors did open and opportunities were given." Unlike the manner in which it was depicted in the film, she says she had "equal opportunities" to perform. "They are still there for all the women officers who are in this organisation. We don't need any bigger proof than the fact that over the last 20 years, the number of women officers in the IAF has gone up at a high rate. This shows that the deeply respected institution has been progressive and positive about bringing about this change in itself. In my journey, [a] supportive environment was first [created] by my family and then it was the IAF. I was lucky to have people around me who supported me. During my initial days in the IAF, I had the support of my fellow officers, supervisors and commanding officers, who helped me when I was caught in a difficult situation," she added.

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First Published: 14 August, 2020 07:25 IST

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