Bollywood actor Ayushmaan Khurana’s latest release Article 15 has managed to grab an avalanche of attention and according to director Anubhav Sinha, the film is being criticized for all the wrong reasons. The decade long tussle between the privileged and the oppressed was the byproduct of social structure and the conflicts brewing up in the society of diversified culture.
Recently, after a squabble with fringe groups in Roorkee and Kanpur, the film has landed in the Supreme Court. According to the reports in Mumbai Mirror, the Brahman Samaj of India (petitioner) approached the apex court seeking cancellation of the film’s CBFC certificate, alleging that it contained objectionable dialogues which were spreading rumors and caste hatred.
However, on Monday the SC declined to entertain the plea, asking the petitioner to approach an appropriate authority with the grievance.
The film has repeatedly received backlash from a diaspora of audience as the hard-hitting reality reflected in the film seems to be far more effective. Anubhav attributes the resistance towards his film, which revolves around the caste system, to the fact that agitating parties don’t want the subject discussed.
He said, “They are enjoying an unnatural equilibrium and if you disturb that it doesn’t work for them. For the longest time, some people kept saying, ‘You have made a film on a true story, but you have showed Yadavs as Brahmins, which is not true.’ I was itching to tell them I hadn’t done that, but I didn’t say anything. Now, after so many people have watched the film, they are still asking the same question,” the filmmaker notes. “They aren’t interested in this question but in the question, the movie is asking… and don’t want it asked.”
Meanwhile, the film has also received constructive criticism and has found traction online as well. “A senior BJP member praised the film on Twitter after watching it and I retweeted it. In 15 minutes, he was being trolled for being ‘anti-Hindu’. This is bizarre; I don’t get it. They gave him. For them it’s not about me misrepresenting the facts, It’s about the fact that this discussion is out in the open. I wonder who funded them to go to the SC? ” the director asks.
Talking about the basic criteria promoted in the film is to conceive a healthy conversation about the caste system which ‘we have not had ever since we became a country’.
The director was also quizzed if there were any similar projects, “I have said whatever I had to. I have limited knowledge, understanding (of the issue); I have never lived in a village. But there are people actively working on it for years and I am sure if this discussion becomes universal their efforts will be strengthened. I will do whatever I can to help that.”