In the Bastar The Naxal Story, Adah Sharma, who plays a police officer, names JNU as a place where students allegedly celebrated the killing of CRPF officers.

Adah Sharma-starrer Bastar: The Naxal Story will be released on March 15. Earlier this year, a section of students of the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) protested against the teaser of the upcoming film, demanding 'action' against the makers and cast of the movie. Now, in an interview with News18, Adah has broken her silence about the controversy over her anti-JNU remark in the teaser. Also read: The Kerala Story makers announce next film Bastar about 'another gripping true incident that will leave you speechless'

Adah Sharma defends her film

Adah Sharma said, “When you play a tough cop like Neeraj Mathur in Bastar, I want people to think that I portrayed her in the strongest, most fearless and powerful way. I want people to believe each word I’m saying in the film. When she says that 76 jawans were butchered and that she wants to gun them down, she’s saying it out of frustration because she saw the jawans being shot and chopped into pieces. I might not say it as Adah but Neerja would.”

Bastar The Naxal Story-JNU controversy

In the Bastar: The Naxal Story teaser, Adah Sharma, who plays a police officer, calls for the public execution of ‘left-leaning pseudo intellectuals' of big cities who 'side with Naxals'. In a scene, she names JNU as a place where students allegedly celebrated the killing of CRPF officers by Naxals in Bastar, Chhattisgarh. In February, JNU students, who burnt posters of the film as part of their protest, slammed the director for 'spreading dangerous propaganda and inciting violence'.

“We demand immediate action against Sudipto Sen, Adah Sharma, and Vipul Amrutlal Shah for the open call for genocide of JNU students. Such a step to mislead people is a criminal act. All legal steps will be taken and we appeal to our alumni and V-C to take urgent action,” said JNU Students Union president Aishe Ghosh on X (formerly Twitter).

Adah Sharma's response to criticism of her film

Reacting to those slamming her film, Adah Sharma said in the same interview, “Once people watch the film, they’ll understand what it’s about. But like I said even during The Kerala Story, it’s a democracy – people can choose to watch a film or not, they can comment after watching a film or not. And we should also be respecting those who are making comments without watching the film because that’s their choice."

The Kerala Story controversy

Nearly a year after The Kerala Story, Vipul Shah, Sudipto Sen and Adah Sharma have joined hands once again for a film, Bastar: The Naxal Story, reportedly based on the real-life incidents of Naxals in Chhattisgarh. 

Controversy erupted around their last film, The Kerala Story, after its trailer claimed that 32,000 women from Kerala had gone missing and joined the terrorist group ISIS. However, in the face of protests, the contentious figure in the trailer was later withdrawn. Its trailer description was later changed to a story of three women from Kerala.