MUMBAI,SONAM SAIGAL:The Bombay High Court on Monday said there was no justification in directing the deletion of signboard of Punjab in the film, ‘Udta Punjab’, which deals with drug menace in the State.
The court cleared the movie for release with just one cut and a modification in the disclaimer. The HC directed the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) to issue A certificate to ‘Udta Punjab’ by Wednesday and okayed the release of the film on Friday.
“We do not find anything in the script of the movie that affects the sovereignty of the nation,” the HC observed. It said that it was for filmmakers to choose the setting of their films as it was the underlying key to creative freedom. The film was made for adults and that no one could dictate the filmmaker without abusing creative freedom.
“So many litigants awaiting justice in the state. ‘Udta Punjab’ is hardly a cause that should be brought to highest court of State,” the HC ruled.
The Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) was not empowered by law to censor films as the word censor was not included in the Cinematograph Act, the court said adding that freedom of creative expression was absolute and could never be restricted.
The Board had cleared the film with 13 cuts under the ‘A’ category, Its chairman Pahlaj Nihalani said on Sunday.
Mr. Nihalani, in the eye of a storm for demanding a large number of cuts, said nine members of the Board watched the film and “unanimously” cleared it after the proposed 13 cuts.
“The CBFC’s job is now over. It is now up to the producer to go to the court or tribunal. We will implement the order,” Mr. Nihalani said.