by Deepak kaistha __
Unfolding saga of the ‘not-so-accidental’ Prime Minister
With the BJP supporting ‘The Accidental Prime Minister’ so openly, the film acquires a decisively political tone, which may not be a good thing for them. But the Congress cannot deny the possible repercussions of this ‘UPA-era redux’ film during election season either.
The trailer of ‘The Accidental Prime Minister’ on the former Indian Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh is out. Based on the book by Dr Singh’s media adviser Sanjay Baru, the trailer itself leaves little to imagination on the narrative that the film seeks to present. Dr Manmohan Singh is shown as a puppet Prime Minister whose strings were pulled by the Gandhi family, in particular by former Congress President Ms Sonia Gandhi.
In the course of the trailer, the character of Dr Singh, played by noted actor and BJP supporter Anupam Kher, is shown as a man with a genuine passion for his work. It shows how Dr Singh is repeatedly snubbed by Ms Sonia Gandhi in issues like the Indo-US nuclear deal and Indo-Pak relations.
The infamous incident where Rahul Gandhi trashed an ordinance to save convicted MPs and MLAs from disqualification is also shown, which was a major embarrassment for the UPA government and for Dr Singh himself. Dr Singh is also shown offering his resignation, which is refused by Ms Sonia Gandhi on the grounds that with a lot of corruption scandals grabbing headlines, it is the wrong time for Rahul Gandhi to take over.
BJP shared the trailer on its Twitter handle with the tweet, “Riveting tale of how a family held the country to ransom for 10 long years. Was Dr Singh just a regent who was holding on to the PM’s chair till the time heir was ready? Watch the official trailer of #TheAccidentalPrimeMinister, based on an insider’s account, releasing on 11 Jan!”
The Maharashtra State Youth Congress has sent a letter to the movie’s producers, stating that ‘facts have been played with’ and ‘presented in an incorrect manner’ in the trailer to ‘malign’ Singh, Congress Chairperson Sonia Gandhi and the party, which was ‘unacceptable’ to the unit. The Congress has asked for a screening of the movie before release, so that they can ask for deletion of some objectionable scenes.
From seeking a ‘Congress-mukt Bharat’ in the 2014 election campaign, the BJP’s agenda over the past four years has shifted more towards a ‘parivaar’ mukt Congress. The BJP has sought to give credit to those leaders of the Congress who have played a pivotal role in nation building and did not belong to the ‘Nehru-Gandhi’ family. These include Mahatma Gandhi, Vallabhbhai Patel and B R Ambedkar. Even Dr Singh comes in that category now, being a champion of the 1991 liberalisation reforms when he was the FM.
BJP has received some flak on Twitter for its sharing of the trailer, with netizens criticizing it for openly supporting a commercial movie as a political party. The very fact that the BJP is supporting the film so openly may defeat the intended purpose of the film itself; because every ‘fact’ presented will be viewed with a political lens.
The Congress cannot look the other way either and will have to firmly and proactively counter the narrative of the movie. While it attacks the BJP government on its performance over the past four years, the movie will seek to remind people of the state of affairs in India under UPA-2 in particular, which does bring some highly unpleasant memories to mind.
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Riveting tale of how a family held the country to ransom for 10 long years. Was Dr Singh just a regent who was holding on to the PM’s chair till the time heir was ready? Watch the official trailer of #TheAccidentalPrimeMinister, based on an insider’s account, releasing on 11 Jan! pic.twitter.com/ToliKa8xaH
— BJP (@BJP4India) December 27, 2018
Such fake propaganda by BJP won’t desist @INCIndia from questioning the Modi Govt on –
— Randeep Singh Surjewala (@rssurjewala) December 27, 2018