Udta Punjab verdict out: Only 2 out of 89 cuts to stay, movie might 'fly' on the set date

| Monday, June 13, 2016 - 17:21
First Published |
Court begins hearing on 'Udta Punjab'; film does not defame Punjab, says the court

Mumbai: In what can be termed as a win-win situation for the filmmakers of 'Udta Punjab', the court on Monday while hearing the much-debated case of the Bollywood movie has said that the film is ideally not putting the state of Punjab in a bad light rather it is highlighting the rampant drug menace.

Highlights of the court's judgement:

Cut-protagonist urinating in crowd-we don't feel that this scene is required, said the court. "Dialogue on zameen"- this part is not required to be deleted and Cut 10 suggested by CBFC is also not required to be deleted. Zameen dialogue will not affect punjab, added the court in its observation.

The High Court also observed that the multiplex audience is mature enough and the freedom of express and cretivity is absolute. The film does not hamper the sovereignty of the country.

Earlier on Friday, the court had directed Pahlaj Nihalani, Chief of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC), that his job is to certify films and not censor them.

"We don't find anything in the film that shows Punjab in bad light or affects the sovereignty or integrity of India as claimed by CBFC", said the HC.
The HC further added," Not for anybody to interfere unless creative freedom is abused.  None can dictate the maker as to how to make the film".
The movie depicts the downfall of a rockstar, and all characters in the film show facets of drug menace. It also maintains that there is no reason to delete the ‘Punjab’ sign board in the film. It is entirely on the filmmakers to choose the setting for a film, said the court while pronouncing its judgement on the 'Udta Punjab' controversy.



The demand by Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) on stay of the film has been rejected and the court has directed CBFC to issue a fresh certification within a period of next 48 hours. 

The movie came in the limelight for its depiction of drug menace in the state of Punjab. However, the controversy came to the fore when director Anurag Kashyap publicly denounced the CBFC chief Pahlaj Nihalani and said the latter’s behavior was ‘dictatorial’. 

The movie stars Shahid Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Alia Bhatt and Diljit Dosanjh is scheduled for release on June 17.

The court's verdict has come as a big relief to the makers of the film as the court has also accepted the disclaimer that the filmmakers had offered to attach to the film. Lawyer of the film's producer Phantom Films had moved the high court against multiple cuts made by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC). 

Incidentally, Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi on Monday has reached the city of Jalandhar in Punjab, to lead a protest against the drug menace in the state. 


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