No malice behind open letter on ”Padmaavat”: Swara

Mumbai (PTI): Actor Swara Bhasker says she wrote an open letter criticising “Padmaavat” because she wanted to raise some questions about the film on a public platform.

Bhasker’s letter, which criticises director Sanjay Leela Bhansali for apparent glorification of the practice of Jauhar (mass sati), has sparked a controversy online.

Responding to the criticism, the actor said, “Everyone has the right to critique and express their opinion. Like me, others also have the right to express their thoughts. I made a point, I said what I felt.

“I think I kept my point across in a very polite and respectful manner. I didn’t have any bad intention or malice in my heart,” she told reporters at an event here last evening.

The actor said she thought her questions were valid and needed to be asked.

“If people don’t agree with me, it’s totally fine. It’s a democracy, so it’s good if people think there can be a difference of opinion. Debates and discussions should happen. This is the purpose of art.”

In the open letter, which became viral on social media, the actor had said she felt reduced to a vagina after watching “Padmaavat”.

The mention of vagina in her letter has also caused incessant trolling against her, which, the actor said, surprised her.

“I didn’t think it would cause a row and I never thought people, who are not even connected with the film, will get upset. I also didn’t know that this special word, which stars from ‘V’, just taking that word would cause a controversy! I mean frankly, I said something, others reacted.

“There’s nothing to be upset about, especially those who have nothing to do with the film need not be upset.”

The actor, who worked with Bhansali in “Guzaarish”, said she is yet to speak to him personally about it.

“I haven’t spoken to him about this. The letter I wrote was in the format of an open letter. Because this film has become a national talking point, it has become a part of national conversation.”

The actor said those making fun of the letter forget that she was among the people who were vocal in their support for the release of “Padmaavat”.

“I have constantly spoken against Karni Sena, I have spoken for the right of Viacom, Sanjay sir and the whole team of ‘Padmaavat’ and it’s not only their right but every artiste’s that whichever story he or she wants to tell, they should be able to do that in a protective environment,” Bhaskar added.

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