Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl: From portrayal of IAF to nepotism here's a list of controversies from the film

The recently released web film Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl has given way to a full-blown controversy. To help you get a clear idea, we’ve tracked down the controversies and the story behind it.
Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl: From potrayal of IAF to nepotism, here's a list of controversies around the film
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The hype over Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl has given way to a full-blown controversy where there seems to be something new emerging every day. The web film, Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl is based on the life of one of the first Indian Air Force women pilots to fly during the Kargil War. This biopic was produced by Karan Johar’s Dharma Productions. The film was directed by Sharan Sharma. Ever since it’s release, the film has found itself in the sea of controversies. 

The movie is facing controversy for taking creative liberties and for featuring the IAF as being hostile to women officers. The film features Flight Lieutenant Saxena as the first and only woman pilot to have flown amid the 1999 Kargil conflict. But, recently one of her fellow pilots has dismissed these claims. This is not the first controversy to arise out of the recently released film. To help you get a clear idea of all the controversies based on the film, we’ve made it easier, by tracking down the controversies around ‘Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl’ and the story behind it. 

Gunjan Saxena wasn’t the only woman to fly in the Kargil conflict: 

Though Gunjan Saxena in a letter revealed that she was indeed the first woman to fly in a combat zone, two other fellow female pilots claim otherwise. Gunjan said that she didn’t want to be in the limelight but decided to address the controversy because her hard-earned reputation was being taken away. 

The movie depicted that Gunjan Saxena was the only female pilot to have flown during the Kargil war. But that is factually incorrect claims a fellow pilot Sreevidya Rajan. In a lengthy Facebook post she wrote, “In the movie, Gunjan Saxena was shown as the only lady pilot to fly in Kargil operations. This is factually incorrect. We were posted together in Udhampur and when Kargil started, I was the first woman pilot to be sent along with the male counterparts in the first detachment of our unit which deployed in Srinagar. I flew missions in the conflict area even before Gunjan’s arrival at Srinagar. After a few days of operation, Gunjan Saxena came with the next set of crew.” 

Another denial came from former Wing Commander Namrita Chandi. In her letter that was published in a news report, she said, “As I mentioned, creative license is one thing but when you deal with institutions, you cannot change facts. Elaborate and fantasise, if you must. But don’t peddle lies. Namrita claimed to have trained with Gunjan Saxena. 

They weren’t ill-treated by their officers: 

This controversy arose after the way the IAF was portrayed in the movie. The authorities in the Indian Air Force wrote a letter to the Central Board of Film Certification over the supposed undue negative portrayal of the IAF personnel in the film. Apart from that Sreevidya in her Facebook post clearly mentioned that though the seniors were strict, there was no gender discrimination shown, neither were they ill-treated. She said, “The squadron commander was a thorough professional. He was a very strict and tough officer who took us to task whenever there was a mistake from our side, be it male or female. We never faced any humiliating physical strength demonstrations as shown in the movie. We were never ill-treated or humiliated by our fellow officers. As shown in the movie, there were no separate toilet facilities and changing rooms for ladies in the unit. After initial difficulties, we shared the limited resources with our fellow officers and they always accommodated and helped us whenever it was needed.”


The final acts of heroism that were showcased in the film never really happened:

There were heroic acts portrayed by the protagonist that never actually happened mentioned Sreevidya in her post. “The heroic acts of the protagonist portrayed in the climax never actually happened and may have been shown as part of cinematic licence. Gunjan and I were posted together in two stations. Being her coursemate and a good friend, I believe that the filmmakers have twisted the facts given by Gunjan for the sake of publicity.”

The portrayal of the Indian Armed Forces: 

When the trailer was released, the IAF noticed that, “certain scenes and dialogues in the movie and its trailer, which was forwarded to this office for viewing, have been found to portray the IAF in an undue negative light,” they mentioned in their letter to the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC). In the letter the IAF mentioned that. "Dharma Productions had agreed to represent Indian Air Force (IAF) with authenticity and make all efforts to ensure that the film helps to inspire the next generation of IAF officers.


Finally, apart from the mentioned above, the movie, Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl faced controversy due to nepotism. Following the death of late actor Sushant Singh Rajput, there was a campaign started and targeted against the film and producer Karan Johar for supporting nepotism because he cast Janhvi Kapoor. The trailer received around 240k dislikes. 

ALSO READ: Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl: Should Karan Johar break his silence on objections from IAF officers? COMMENT