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Horse flap stables India’s $7 mil ‘Rang’

Gandhi says pic didn't have Animal Board permission

Bollywood film “Rang de basanti’s” worldwide release set for Friday has been held up by a lawmaker who objected to the unauthorized use of a horse.

Parliamentarian Maneka Gandhi, whose sister-in-law Sonia Gandhi is the leader of the ruling party in India, has accused the filmmakers of not getting the Animal Welfare Board’s permission before production.

“The movie was shot without mandatory permission from the Animal Welfare Board and when the board sent notice to the producers, they did not reply. It is a statutory obligation and I don’t see any reason why the movie should be released without clearing the matter,” Maneka Gandhi told newspaper Panchjanya.

Pic had already run into trouble with the Indian Air Force for showing a MiG crash.

Without the certification, pic cannot be exported or shown in India, said UTV’s U.S. rep Lokesh Dhar.

While the IAF has withdrawn its objections no one has signed the forms for pic’s release, Dhar said. The release has been pushed back to Jan. 27.

The $7 million film directed by Rakesh Mehra stars Aamir Khan (“Lagaan”), Madhavan, Alice Patten and Soha Ali.

India’s Oscar entry “Paheli” and “Taj Mahal” had similar run-ins with Maneka Gandhi, but they were resolved before pic’s due date, Dhar said.

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