Even before the Padmaavat controversy could completely die down, another historical film is facing opposition from a religious outfit claiming the misrepresentation of facts. This time it’s Kangana Ranaut-starrer Manikarnika, which has caught the eye of a Brahmin group from Rajasthan. The head of this fringe outfit claims that the period film contains some objectionable scenes on Rani Lakshmibai, who was herself a Brahmin.
Helmed by Telugu director Radhakrishna Jagarlamudi (better known as Krish), the story of the film has been penned by Telugu writer Vijayendra Prasad of Baahubali fame. In context of the Brahmin group’s objections and concerns, the writer says, “No need to worry about it as I have portrayed her in the most respectable way. She is a warrior who fought against the British. She is my favourite woman leader. I have grown up reading about her. So, I will always portray her in an inspirational way.”
Vijayendra emphasises that no scene in the film has been written to degrade Rani Lakshmibai. “The film’s title is Manikarnika, because it is her name! Her parents named her that because she was born in Kasi and the Manikarnika Ghat there is very famous. Even I named my daughter Manikarnika, so you now know how much I respect Rani Lakshmibai,” says the writer, who is director S.S. Rajamouli’s father. He added that one will feel proud after watching her role in the film.
The period film’s producer, Kamal Jain also states that the Queen of Jhansi has been portrayed in a very respectable manner. Kamal said in a statement, “As responsible filmmakers, we have taken utmost care while portraying Rani Lakshmi-bai’s character and have consulted historians and scholars. Rani Lakshmibai was a freedom fighter and one of the most respected leaders that our country has seen. She is a symbol of valour and the film’s story depicts the same.” Further, he clarified that there was nothing objectionable in the movie or in the scenes that were being referred to by the Brahmin group, and the film has not distorted history in anyway. In fact, Kamal also offered sharing the script of Manikarnika with authorised persons, who were doubtful about the authenticity.