Article Hindi

Sanju toilet scene: Activist's stinker stands weak before Sanjay Dutt's own experience in jail

Prithvi Mhaske has objected to the toilet leakage scene in the film starring Ranbir Kapoor.

Ranbir Kapoor in Sanju.

Keyur Seta

A social activist, Prithvi Mhaske, has complained to the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) against the toilet scene in Rajkumar Hirani’s forthcoming film Sanju, a biopic of actor Sanjay Dutt.

Mhaske said the scene, which was included in the film's trailer, will create a bad impression about Indian jails and jail authorities.

However, Sanjay Dutt, who was convicted under the Arms Act and spent time behind bars at Pune's Yerawada jail, had himself spoken at the India Today conclave in 2016 about the appalling condition of toilets in jails.

The scene Mhaske has objected to shows Ranbir Kapoor, who plays Dutt, panicking after the toilet in his cell gets choked and starts overflowing.

Mhaske said in his letter, “In the trailer of the movie, we have seen a scene that Sanjay Dutt was in such a barrack of a jail in which the toilet overflowed. As per the information available, the government and jail authorities are taking very well care of all the barracks of the jails. We never heard any such incidents anywhere (sic).”

Mhaske also warned the CBFC that he would approach the courts if it did not suggest removal of the scene. “This particular scene will make a bad impression about the jails and jails authorities of India. If there is no action about the same by you then we are left with no option to approach honourable court to put stay on the release of the movie (sic),” he wrote.

In the past, films like Sriram Raghavan’s Ek Haseena Thi (2004), Madhur Bhandarkar’s Jail (2009), Abhishek Chaubey’s Udta Punjab (2016) and Majid Majidi’s Beyond The Clouds (2018) have shown the terrible conditions in Indian jails, including congestion and the presence of rodents.

Mhaske, in his letter, accepted that bad jail conditions have been shown in earlier films but he believes such incidents (like the one in Sanju) have never been shown.

Speaking at the India Today Conclave in 2016, Dutt had said, “The toilets are fantastic because the doors are this small. You do anything, they have to watch you. They are dirty; there is no hygiene. It’s terrible in there.”

Dutt’s description of the barracks also contradicts Mhaske’s claim about jail authorities taking proper care of the barracks. He had said, “If one barrack has a capacity of 50 people, how will 300 people stay in it? Even turning while sleeping triggers fights. The condition is worse than animals.”

So far, there has been no response from the CBFC on Mhaske’s letter.

Watch Dutt speaking about the conditions in jail: