Mumbai: The Bombay High Court today asked the Censor Board to explain why it is insisting on deletion of Punjab signboard in film “Udta Punjab” even as the film body insisted that the 13 changes suggested by its Revising Committee were justified and proper.
A bench headed by Justice S C Dharmadhikari was hearing a petition filed by Phantom Films, producer of ‘Udta Punjab’, which is aggrieved by an order of the Revising Committee of the Board that suggested changes in the film before its release on June 17.
Justice Dharmadhikari compared drug-themed ‘Udta Punjab’ with another film released earlier titled “Go, Goa, Gone” saying in that movie the state of Goa is shown as a place where people go to socialise in parties and also take banned drugs.
“If Goa can be shown as a place of drug abuse in that film, what is wrong if Punjab is shown in Udta Punjab?” asked the judge.
The Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) lawyer argued that the order of the Revising Committee suggesting 13 changes in the film was not arbitrary and the committee had applied its mind while making these suggestions.
“We are objecting to the reference of Punjab and its people and the language used in the film”, the lawyer argued.
Hearing the arguments, the court said that it was not satisfied with the first two suggestions made by the Censor Board in regard to the first two suggestions of the Committee about removing references to places in that state such as Chandigarh, Amritsar, Tarantaran, Jashanpura, Moga and Ludhiana.
On other suggestions of Revising Committee, the Censor Board lawyer said he would make submissions tomorrow, following which the court deferred the matter.
The Censor Board also justified the impugned order saying that there were no delay on its part and that it was proper and within the framework of the guidelines.
However, Ravi Kadam, counsel for Phantom Films, the production company of Anurag Kashyap, said the impugned order was issued without any application of mind and was arbitrary.
“Punjab is an integral part of the concept and cannot be deleted from the film”, he said.