An NGO has reportedly filed a petition in the Supreme Court, against the Bombay High Court verdict that cleared the release of Udta Punjab, with a single cut.
'#UdtaPunjab' row: NGO moves Supreme Court against Bombay High Court's decision clearing release of film with single cut
— NDTV (@ndtv) June 15, 2016
The NGO, Human Rights Awareness, contends that the Bombay HC cannot rule on what cuts can be made in a film. Further, the petition states that the film depicts Punjab in a negative vein. The apex court has directed the NGO's counsel to file all the mandatory paperwork and it will then take a call on whether or not to hear the case, by Thursday.
The Bombay HC had been approached by Udta Punjab’s producers Phantom Films and Balaji Motion Pictures, after the revising committee of the Central Board of Film Certification did not give them the paperwork pertaining to all the cuts the board wanted, before granting it an ‘A’ certificate.
By the time the team did receive the documenta from the CBFC, the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT) which could have admitted a petition against the ruling of the CBFC’s revising committee, was on a leave of absence, so Phantom and Balaji had to directly approach the Bombay High Court.
The Bombay HC had upbraided the CBFC for overstepping its bounds as a certification body and acting as a censoring agency; and also criticised the numerous cuts it had asked for as a condition for granting an ‘A’ certificate to Udta Punjab.
On Tuesday, the Udta Punjab team — Anurag Kashyap, Ekta Kapoor, Abhishek Chaubey, Diljit Dosanjh, Madhu Mantena, Shahid Kapoor and Alia Bhatt — had addressed a press conference to express their gratitude for the Bombay HC verdict, which meant that their film could meet its scheduled 17 June release date.
Anurag was asked then, what the team would do if any petitioner decided to approach the apex court against the film. “What can one do? Anurag had replied. “We’ll have to go to court and present our case once again.”
While more details are awaited on the NGO’s petition against the Bombay HC verdict in the Supreme Court, there is one more case that is pending against Udta Punjab — in the Punjab and Haryana HC.
After a Jalandhar-based advocate Wattan Sharma filed a petition against Udta Punjab for depicting the state and its youth in a “bad light”, the Punjab HC appointed a panel to view the film on Tusday, 14 June, and present a report on its content by Thursday, 16 June.