London: India committed “international suicide” by banning a documentary on the December 16 Delhi gang-rape from screening in the country, the British filmmaker behind the controversial film has said.

Leslee Udwin, the director of ‘India’s Daughter’ also said it was ironical that her purpose of “giving a gift of gratitude” to India has been misinterpreted as “pointing fingers” at the country.

She said: “My whole purpose was to give a gift of gratitude to India, to actually praise India, to single India out as a country that was exemplary in its response to this rape, as a country where one could actually see change beginning.

“The supreme irony is that they are now accusing me of having wanted to point fingers at India, defame India, and it is they who have committed international suicide by banning this film.”

Speaking after a screening of the documentary – that has stoked a controversy, with the Indian government banning its telecast last week and asking the video-sharing website YouTube to remove all links to the documentary – Udwin said Prime Minister Narendra Modi would see similar thoughts echoed in the film as his ‘Beti Bachao’ campaign.

“If (Modi) spent one hour seeing this documentary, he would see his own statements since he got into power reflected in this film.

“The film is saying exactly what he’s saying with his ‘Beti Bachao’ campaign,” she said over the weekend.

The documentary – still available online in the UK via BBC’s iplayer tool – features an interview of one of four men sentenced to death, Mukesh Singh, for rape, torture and murder of 23-year-old ‘Nirbhaya’ on a moving bus.

Police said the ban was imposed as comments in the film by one of those convicted of the crime created an atmosphere of “fear and tension” and risked fuelling public anger.

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