Director Ketan Mehta’s most awaited film ‘Rang Rasiya’, based on Raja Ravi Varma, the father of modern Indian art, is once again broiled in controversy. The illustrious painter’s granddaughter, Indira Devi Kunjamma who is based in Kerala, has sent a legal notice to Ketan Mehta, asking him to stop the release of the film on the grounds that Ketan Mehta has portrayed Raja Ravi Varma in an erotic manner.
The director said “Raja Ravi Varma is a national icon and I went through so many obstacles financially and emotionally over the last five years as I felt strongly about taking his powerful story to Indians across the globe. And as far as I am concerned, he was India’s greatest artist, who I truly admire and this is my tribute to him. The man stood and fought for Freedom of Expression and won his case in the courts of India. I am saddened that his own descendants are objecting to what their own grandfather stood and fought for i.e. “The right to freedom of expression.” The film that has been ready for over five years was showcased at the Trivandrum Film Festival five years back with promos and trailers being available since then. Obviously, receiving a legal notice a week before the release of the film has malafide intentions.”
Jayantilal Gada (Pen) who is distributing the film further added “We took Ketanji’s film after verifying that it has a Censor certification and after seeing the film, and have no doubt that the story of this powerful Indian icon will reach over a billion Indians through this film. The premiere of the film was held in Gurgaon and Baroda and the response for the film and for the story of Raja Ravi Varma has been overwhelming. I am happy to show the film to his granddaughter if she would like to see it as she will understand the story of the visionary Raja Ravi Varma, told by one of our most honest and brilliant filmmakers in India. I am sure it will make her even more proud of her own heritage.”
Presented by Jayantilal Gada (Pen), Rang Rasiya is directed by Ketan Mehta, produced by Deepa Sahi and Aanand Mahendroo. It stars Randeep Hooda, Nandana Sen and newcomer Triptha Parashar in lead roles. ‘Rang Rasiya’ is set to release on November 7, 2014.