Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: The release of Odia film ‘Biju Babu’ has left a bad taste in the mouth of moviegoers who have come down hard on the eponymous movie for being bereft of the ideologies of legendary leader late Biju Patnaik. The movie seems so distant from the portrayal of the life of Biju Patnaik that experts and politicians have questioned the timing of its release and have termed it political.

Some allege political link in the release of the movie citing that the lead character of the movie, Anubhav Mohanty is BJD candidate from Kendrapara Lok Sabha constituency.

The film, directed by Nila Madhav Panda, hit theatres on March 29, but only a handful of audience can be seen at the cinema halls.

“There are no inspiring things about Biju babu in the film. There is only masala stuff in the movie. It was a complete waste of my money and time,” said Manas Kumar Parida, a moviegoer in Cuttack.

Expressing similar views, another viewer said, “When the movie is not about Biju Babu’s biography, it is incorrect to use his name. As the elections are round the corner, they are showcasing Anubhav Mohanty and using Biju babu’s name to gain some mileage.”

On the other hand, actor Anubhav denied the charges and said, “The movie is not a biopic and we have made it clear from the beginning. The ideologies of Biju babu were only showcased in the film and it has no political links.”

Sources said a political party sponsored two shows for viewers at a cinema hall in Bhubaneswar on April 1 to get political mileage.

Meanwhile, Kalinga Sena has moved the Chief Electoral Officer, Odisha seeking a ban on display of the movie during poll time.

“How can the film run during polls? Anubhav who is the BJD candidate from Kenrapara LS seat is playing lead role. Therefore, he should be barred from filing nomination as he has violated the model code of conduct. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik deliberately allowed the release of the movie,” said Hemant Rath, president of Kalinga Sena.

Political pundits and cinema critics also sense some political motive behind the release of the movie in the poll-bound State.

Cine critic Dilip Hali said public will think that it is about Biju babu, but there is nothing in the film about the legendary leader. “The movie is made out of a fake concept and the leader’s personality has not been shown in the movie,” said Hali.