DD-Prakash Jha call truce; JP film to air on Dec 4

NEW DELHI: Indian pubcaster Doordarshan and Prakash Jha have called a truce, after the film-maker agreed to most of the cuts suggested by the broadcaster relating to a film on Emergency and freedom fighter Jaiprakash Narayan (JP).

The film is now slated for airing on December 4, bringing to rest a controversy that had politicians and supporters of freedom of expression feature in a slanging match for over a fortnight.

Announcing the truce today, DD's director-general Navin Kumar said, "The film will be shown on a prime time slot of DD National at 9:30 pm."

He, however, clarified, "The basic structure of the film remains unaltered, even though a little bit of fine tuning is being made to make it appropriate for a national telecast."

Playing down the issue, which had made Jha threaten at one time that he would play the film at private screenings, Kumar said, there was "no controversy per se between Doordarshan and Mr Prakash Jha over the screening of the film", as made out in a section of the media.

Jha, who was in Delhi today also expressed satisfaction over the slotting of JP's film on DD National, saying this will enable the whole nation to watch the biopic of the veteran leader Jaiprakash Narayan.

According to him, as a creative person he is satisfied with the Prasar Bharati decision to show the film as it was made. Still, he did concede that he has agreed to make small changes pertaining to representation of geographic map of undivided India and a personal reference to Sanjay Gandhi, a brother-in-law of the present Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and son of late PM Indira Gandhi, in the film.

The one-hour- 45- minute film was commissioned by Doordarshan on behalf of the ministry of culture during the year 2003-04 when a Bharatiya Janata Party-led coalition government was at the Centre.

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