MUMBAI: Sandeep Ssingh, one of the producers of "PM Narendra Modi", says that the makers of the forthcoming film had acquired the rights of a song penned by lyricist Javed Akhtar and that is why he was given a credit. The producer also says Akhtar could have discussed it before commenting on social media.
"Javed Akhtar is one of the highly regarded poets and lyricists of our nation and I have grown up watching his films and songs. He knows all of us so, before tweeting on the matter, he could have just made a call.
"We bought the copyright of the song before using it in our film. Our music department followed the process," Ssingh told IANS here.
Akhtar had tweeted on Friday: "I am shocked to find my name on the poster of this film. Have not written any songs for it."
He also posted a snapshot of the trailer's video in which his name was mentioned among several other artistes in the lyrics category.
But did anyone contact Akhtar?
"Even he could have done the same thing. He knows Vivek (Oberoi, the film's lead actor), he knows Bhushan Kumar of T-Series. Before tweeting, he could have contacted us," the producer replied.
According to a statement from Ssingh, "T-Series being the official music partner of our film...we have taken the songs 'Ishwar Allah'* from the film '1947: Earth' and the song 'Suno gaur se duniya walon' from the film 'Dus', thus we have given the due credits to respective lyricists Javed Sahab and Sameerji".
The film is also involved in controversy because of its trailer.
Many claimed that the trailer that was shown to the media earlier this week was different from what is now available on YouTube for public viewing. Are the makers trying to avoid the projection of the 2002 Gujarat riots in the film?
Without speaking much about the trailer, Ssingh said: "...people will have to watch the film."
The movie is releasing on April 5, a few days before the commencement of the Lok Sabha elections in India.
But a leader of the DMK in Pollachi in Tamil Nadu has reportedly written to the Chief Election Commissioner seeking a ban on the release of Modi's biopic till the Lok Sabha polls get over.
Asked about it, Ssingh said: "I think whether it is the DMK or (other) political party, instead of talking about the film, they should focus on the work they have done for the state and for their people."