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With the Shiv Sena threatening to disrupt the release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Bajirao Mastani and the chief minister asking officials to look into the issue, the film’s star Priyanka Chopra told mid-day that the director has the right to interpret the story the way he wanted to.

On Wednesday, the Sena demanded that the makers must cut portions that allegedly distort Maratha history, saying the film portrays Bajirao Peshwa and his spouses, Kashibai and Mastani, in a manner that hurts the sentiments of the family’s descendants in particular and the Marathi people in general.

Sarnaik said the party has taken the “democratic” route before resorting to Sena-style tactics. “The CM has started the procedure and there are 9-10 days for the film’s release. We expect positive action from the government,” he told mid-day from Nagpur, where the winter session of the State Legislature is currently on.

While Bhansali could not be reached for comment till press time, Priyanka Chopra, who plays Kashibai, told mid-day the film was entirely the director’s vision and it was entirely Bhansali’s prerogative how he wanted to present a particular story.

“For me, whatever I have done is completely and absolutely going by Bhansali’s vision,” said Chopra. “The film is based on a book and the book is inspired by the life of a legend from the 1700s. It is entirely a director’s vision and prerogative about how he wants to present a particular story. And that’s what happens in a democratic country. How are we to say what Bajirao’s personality was in his personal life?”

She said the best anyone, including historians, would know of is Bajirao’s public persona. “How do we know he didn’t dance, smile or didn’t express happiness in his private life?” the actor asked. “We have to allow a director’s vision and imagination to portray what he thinks could have happened. We must just see it as nothing but the cinematic vision of an extremely prolific filmmaker.”

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