RRR wins an Oscar, and BJP Telangana chief Bandi Sanjay Kumar is trolled. This is why.

Across Opposition parties, leaders recalled how Bandi Sanjay had threated RRR before the release of the film.

BySumit Jha

Published Mar 13, 2023 | 1:45 PM Updated Mar 13, 2023 | 3:06 PM

Naatu Naatu cartoon Oscar

Telugu blockbuster RRR‘s music composer MM Keeravani and lyricist Chandrabose scripted history by winning the Best Original Song honour at the 95th Academy Awards for the song ‘Naatu Naatu’ — but why is a political leader from Telangana under attack over the film?

It was a moment to cherish, as this is the first time an Indian song has won at the prestigious Oscars. From every corner of the country, the film and song are being applauded for winning the award.

However, in Telangana, the state BJP chief Bandi Sanjay Kumar is being trolled by every political opponent as well as ordinary citizens — all because of his past comments about the film.

What did Bandi Sanjay in 2020?

In November 2020, when the RRR team released a teaser of the film to wish actor Jr NTR on his birthday, it snowballed into a political issue after Bandi Sanjay Kumar threatened director SS Rajamouli with violence if scenes where Jr NTR — who plays the revolutionary tribal leader Komaram Bheem — is seen wearing a traditional Muslim outfit and skull cap make it to the final cut of RRR.

Accusing Rajamouli of “distorting historical facts” by showing Komaram Bheem wearing a skull cap, the BJP leader warned that he would set theatres showing RRR “on fire”.

“For sensation, if Rajamouli puts a cap on the head of Komaram Bheem, will we keep quiet? Never,” he said at a public meeting.

Never mind that, eventually, it became clear that the Muslim outfit was but a small part of the film and there was a reason that Komaram Bheem was shown wearing it.

The politics erupted after RRR Oscar win

After the film won an Oscar in the Best Original Song category for ‘Naatu Naatu’, the BJP chief was among those who congratulated the team for the win.

“Congratulations and best wishes to team @RRRMovie for clinching the best original song #NaatuNaatu at #Oscars . This moment is historic for Indian cinema and particularly for Telugu people. Proud of @Rahulsipligunj for his performance today which truly deserved standing ovation,” said Bandi Sanjay in a tweet.

Soon after Telangana Digital Media Director, Konatham Dileep tweet: Congratulations to team @RRRMovie on winning the prestigious Oscar award for the song #NaatuNaatu written by @boselyricist. And this is the right time to remember what kind of venom bigots like @bandisanjay_bjp spewed on this movie. Let’s reject such hatemongers!.”

Chipping in with his own opinion, Telangana IT and Industries Minister KT Rama Rao also said: “Not before long, the SAME Bigot will tell you the Award was given only because of Modi.”

Even Congress leaders pointed out how Bandi Sanjay had made comments threatening the film.

“Congratulations India for winning the #Oscar. But don’t forget Telangana BJP President Bandi Sanjay demanded to ban the #RRR Movie, he said he will burn every reel if it gets release (sic),” tweeted Congress MLA from Telangana Danasari Seethaka.

Even the Congress chairman for media and publicity Pawan Khera tweeted: “Let this be remembered that the BJP had threatened to burn down theatres protesting against #RRR… (sic).”