Shabana, who is Farhan's stepmother, has worked extensively with Naseer in some of the most influential films of Indian cinema such as ‘Masoom’.

“Farhan was outstanding in 'Bhaag Milkha Bhaag'. His performance gave me gooseflesh. He has raised the bar for what actors should demand from them while portraying real-life characters. Naseer is entitled to his opinion. But most Indians don't agree with him,” she said.

While the film's director Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra and Farhan desisted from comment, Prasoon was forthright in expressing his feelings on the issue.

"I respect Naseer saab and he's entitled to his opinion. But I don't agree with his opinion on BMB. I've written the film. It has inspired and connected with people all across the world. It was not meant to be a documentary or a niche film,” he said.

Bhaag Milkha Bhaag chronicled the life of former athlete Milkha Singh and viewers enjoyed watching well-trained Farhan as the Flying Sikh on big screen so much that it reaped gold at the box office and crossed Rs 100 crore mark.

Commenting on Naseer's opinion that Farhan doesn't resemble Milkha, Prasoon said: "In my opinion, Farhan has done a great job in terms of the character that I wrote. I had deliberately incorporated tones of fact and fiction. He has shown in his interpretation of the character. There are no false notes at all in his performance."

Pavan Malhotra, who plays Milkha's coach in the film, said: “You can't please everyone. I was and I am very happy to be part of BMB. (Bhaag Milkha Bhaag).

When cross-checked, Naseer admitted he was not impressed by Bhaag Milkha Bhaag.

"But the makers are convinced they've made a masterpiece. Look, spare me, will you? No one involved with that film gives a damn about my opinion. And I am not really keen to hurt their feelings,” he said.
However, director Ajay Bahl said he didn't like the film, but appreciates Farhan's acting.

Bahl said, "I didn't like 'Bhaag Milkha Bhaag' at all. I found the film too long. The script went all over the place and the direction was over-indulgent. However, I think Farhan did a splendid job of recreating Milkha Singh's persona. The film just didn't match his performance."

(Agencies)

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