Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi said on Tuesday that Punjab has a crippling drug problem and censoring the Shahid Kapoor-starrer Udta Punjab would not fix the menace in the state.
“...The government must accept the reality and find solutions,” Rahul Gandhi posted on Twitter.
Punjab has a crippling drug problem. Censoring #UdtaPunjab will not fix it. The government must accept the reality and find solutions.— Office of RG (@OfficeOfRG) June 7, 2016
The censor board has asked the makers of the film to drop all references to Punjab from the movie which revolves around the state’s drug addiction problem.
Watch the trailer here:
The decision of the board’s revising committee is possibly aimed at helping the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal dodge uncomfortable questions around the mounting drug addiction situation with merely nine months to go for the assembly polls.
Analysts say the movie’s portrayal of drug addiction among Punjab’s youth might prove disastrous for the SAD, an NDA constituent, because of widespread discontent regarding the state government’s failure to tamp down on the problem.
Bollywood filmmaker Anurag Kashyap, who is co-producing the movie, said the country’s censor board chief is a “dictatorial man”.
“I always wondered what it felt like to live in North Korea... Ab to plane pakadney ki bhi zaroorat nahin (Now I don’t even need to catch a plane),” Kashyap tweeted, alluding to the dictatorial rule in North Korea.
I always wondered what it felt like to live in North Korea .. Ab to plane pakadney ki bhi zaroorat nahin..— Anurag Kashyap (@anuragkashyap72) June 6, 2016
Udta Punjab, which Kashyap’s Phantom Films has co-produced with Balaji Motion Pictures, is directed by Abhishek Chaubey. Starring an ensemble cast of actors like Shahid Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Kareena Kapoor Khan and Diljit Dosanjh, the movie delves on how the youth of Punjab have succumbed to drugs.
However, the subject has reportedly not gone down too well with the ruling dispensation in the state and what followed was what many are considering a politically motivated move by the censor board’s revising committee to demand as many as 89 cuts.
Kashyap said Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) chief Pahlaj Nihalani operates “like an oligarch”.
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