A public interest litigation (PIL) has been filed in the Jammu and Kashmir High Court against Vidhu Vinod Chopra’s upcoming film Shikara: The Untold Story Of Kashmiri Pandits, demanding a stay on its release and deleting some of the scenes.
Shikara is set against the backdrop of the Kashmiri Pandit exodus from the Kashmir Valley in late 1989 and early 1990, in the wake of violent Islamist insurgency. The film is scheduled to release on February 7.
The petitioners are Iftikhar Misgar, Majid Hyderi and Irfan Hafiz Lone, who have alleged that the film portrays untrue facts about Kashmir and Kashmiri Pandits.
Misgar told IANS: “We are asking for stalling the release and deleting a few scenes that portray the valley’s Muslims in a bad light.”
“We have urged the high court to take the case up on a priority basis,” he added.
A new video earlier in the day tweeted by Vidhu Vinod Chopra Films’ official page said: “In 1990, more than 4,00,000 Kashmiri Pandits were forced to leave their home. 30 years later, their story will finally be told.”
It also showed that a select audience at the special pre-screening showered praises and gave a standing ovation.
One of the screenplay writers of the film, Rahul Pandita, recently replied to a tweet and wrote: “I am a Kashmiri Pandit who lost everything in 1990, while you were doing God knows what in Bombay. I am the writer of #shikara and I would not let anyone compromise on the Pandit story. I will not betray the memory of those who fell to the bullets of radical Islamists.”
In a separate tweet he shared: “This is what I said in my opening remarks on the day #shikara was screened in Delhi. Unlike makers of soft porn films, Kashmir and the story of what happened to the Pandits in 1990 is not a money-making venture for me. It is what I lived.”
“Shikara: The Untold Story Of Kashmiri Pandits” marks Vidhu Vinod Chopra’s comeback to Bollywood as a director for the first time since his 2007 release, “Eklavya“, starring Amitabh Bachchan, Sanjay Dutt, Saif Ali Khan, Vidya Balan, Raima Sen, Jackie Shroff and Jimmy Sheirgill. Chopra introduces Aadil Khan and Sadia in the lead roles of “Shikara”.