On Tuesday, the government told the Supreme Court that it would shortly issue a notification to permit smoking scenes in Bollywood films with a scroll carrying a statutory warning stating that smoking is injurious to health. The apex court bench of Justice P Sathasivam and Justice Ranjan Gogoi was told that the new notification would make it necessary for films, which feature smoking scenes, to run the informative scroll right at the beginning of the film, soon after the interval and during the course of the smoking scene itself.
Senior counsel V Shekhar, appearing for the government, told the court that the notification superseding all earlier notifications prohibiting smoking scenes would be issued on September 14. While adjourning the hearing of the matter, the apex court declined to entertain a plea by a counsel seeking exemption for the release of the film, Heroine, which has scenes of women puffing cigarettes. The notification will pave the way for amending rules that currently restrain filmmakers from showing smoking scenes.