The Indian state of Bengal has offered Deepa Mehta's troubled production, Water, safe passage if the film relocates to Calcutta or elsewhere in Bengal.

Bengal chief minister Jyoti Basu said: 'If anyone tries to be disruptive after we grant the film permission to shoot, my government will ensure that such disrupters are immediately put in place.'' However Basu made the statement after opposition parties announced they would try to prevent Water filming in Bengal as it is 'anti-Hindu'.

Water cranked up in Varanasi in the state of Uttar Pradesh two weeks ago but was forced to stop filming on two occasions because of protestors which claimed it portrayed the city as permissive and corrupt. Mehta eventually decided to move the film elsewhere and is also considering shooting in Madhya Pradesh where chief minister Digvijay Singh has also guaranteed the film security.