The Indian Film and Television Directors' Association (IFTDA) will on Monday lead an appeal to the India's information and broadcasting minister Smriti Irani and home minister Rajnath Singh, on behalf of four other associations, to allow freedom for filmmakers in the wake of the ongoing controversy over "Padmavati".
Members of IFTDA, Cine and TV Artists Association (CINTAA), Western India Cinematographers Association (WICA), Screenwriters Association (SWA) and Association of Cine and Television Art Directors and Costume Designers, will hold a press meet in Mumbai later on Monday.
"Five bodies are coming together to make an appeal for freedom of expression for filmmakers. The industry is shocked and we are hurt that a filmmaker like Sanjay Leela Bhansali is being heckled and abused. Bhansali symbolises success of our film industry in many ways, and if he can be treated like this and harassed, things are not right," Ashoke Pandit, IFTDA president, told IANS.
He said their appeal is to the ministers to take note of the controversy and uphold the freedom of filmmakers.
"Nobody has seen the film, yet people are making assumptions and attacking and abusing Bhansali. Similar controversy happened around 'Indu Sarkar'. What will we do? We can't make films to suit everyone's ego. If someone doesn't want to watch the film, don't watch it. If someone doesn't want it to release, go to court," Pandit said.
"Padmavati", slated to release on December 1, is embroiled in a controversy as some Hindu groups and political parties, including the Congress and the BJP, claim that the film distorts history and wrongly portrays Rajput queen Padmavati, a contention Bhansali has repeatedly rebuffed.