“The IAF uniform in this video is inaccurately donned and the language used is inappropriate. This does not conform to the behavioural norms of those in the armed forces of India. The related scenes need to be withdrawn,” said the IAF, in a tweet from its official handle.
After the controversy created a storm on social media, with many military veterans attacking the film that will be released on Netflix on December 24, Kapoor tweeted a video later in the day to “sincerely apologise for unintentionally hurting anyone’s sentiments” because the trailer showed him using “unparliamentary language” while wearing an IAF uniform.
The IAF is a much-respected institution. Their reputation is unlikely to be sullied by a scene or two in a commercial movie. The IAF should ignore such trivial acts rather than take serious offence.
Kapoor explained that his character in the film was an actor playing the role of a distraught IAF officer whose daughter has been kidnapped. “I have always had the utmost respect and gratitude for the selfless service of all our defence personnel,” he said. Netflix, too, tweeted that its intention was not to “disrespect the armed forces of India in any regard”.
As per Netflix, “AK vs AK” is a Vikramaditya Motwane movie, starring Kapoor and director Anurag Kashyap, playing “themselves as actors”. In the one-minute trailer, Kapoor is seen using foul language while sparring with Anurag Kashyap.
As was reported by TOI in July, in what some may perceive to be unwarranted censorship in a democratic country, the armed forces have demanded they be allowed to preview all films, documentaries and web series made on them to check for dis-tortions that may hurt the sentiments of serving personnel and veterans.
The IAF in August had also complained to the Central Board of Film Certification against the “undue negative portrayal” of the work culture in the force in the film “Gunjan Saxena, The Kargil Girl”. In its letter to the censor board, with copies marked to the Karan Johar-owned Dharma Productions and Netflix, the IAF said, “M/s Dharma Productions presented some situations that are misleading and portray an inappropriate work culture especially against women in the IAF.”