Mumbai: Very few films succeed in receiving attention from the Prime Minister of the country, but Akshay Kumar’s ‘Toilet- Ek Prem Katha’ trailer got Narendra Modi lauding the film on Twitter.
However, the film, which draws from Modi’s Swachh Bharat campaign, have been hit by plagiarism charges.
A filmmaker named Praveen Vyas has sent a legal notice to the makers, claiming that ‘Toilet- Ek Prem Katha’ has plagiarised scenes and dialogues from his documentary ‘Manini', also based on the same subject.
The makers of the film, Prernaa Arora and Shital Bhatia had previously slammed the 'baseless' accusations and now the writers, Garima and Siddharth, have also expressed their disgust at the accusations now.
Sharing their version of their story, Garima told Hindustan Times, “The script was commissioned to us by Neeraj Pandey (film-maker) in 2013 itself, so we have been working on it since December that year.”
Siddharth says, “Neeraj sir liked that and asked us to go ahead with it. After that, we left for research to places like Mathura (Uttar Pradesh), Nandgaon, Barsana, Jhansi and Bahraich, which is near Lucknow.”
On the plagiarisms allegations levelled by Vyas, Garima says, “It’s not possible to pick up a story from any documentary and take a film to the floors within a few weeks’ time. Is it plausible, especially with a film that stars mainstream actors? If our work is subjected to criticism, we are fine with it. But it’s ridiculous, frustrating and insulting for us to hear that we have copied someone’s work.”
Sidharth and Garima, also known of their work in ‘Goliyon Ki Rasleela: Ram-Leela’ and 'Raabta', have no plans to take things lying down and will take the legal route.
Garima says, “Right now, we are verifying the facts and other details. Once we are done, we are, in all likelihood, going to file a defamation case. It’s amazing how people come up with such allegations at the last minute for their 15 minutes of fame.”
Akshay's Toilet: Ek Prem Katha should be made tax-free- CBFC chief Pahlaj Nihalani
‘Toilet-Ek Prem Katha’, also starring Bhumi Pednekar, is directed by Shree Narayan Singh and is releasing on 11 August.