The Punjab government is mulling over banning “Nanak Shah Fakir” in Punjab as it had done in the case of “MSG: The Messenger”, starring Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh.
Following the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) demand that the film should not be released, there have been a series of protests across the state against the film’s release slated for April 17.
The government is likely to be guided by the inputs given by the intelligence wing of the police regarding the possible threat to law and order in the state in case the film is released.
The state police, sources said, are concerned over the protests in Patiala and Amritsar on Thursday as also the one that took place on Friday. The students of Punjabi university blocked the Patiala-Rajpura road for around 45 minutes on Thursday protesting against the film’s release.
Members of a little known radical Sikh organisation —Jatha Neeliyan Faujan — held a protest against the film outside the Golden Temple on Thursday. The organisation was demanding immediate ban on the film, while accusing the SGPC and the Akal Takht jathedar of being under political pressure.
They also questioned the SGPC authorities on the release of “Chaar Sahebzade” (a recent film by Harry Baweja) when it had a pictorial portrayal of Guru Gobind Singh.
Sources said the state government could only take a decision regarding banning a film if there is a potential threat to law and order. However, a film cannot be banned by a state government on the grounds of it unsettling the sensitivities or of a particular community or a set of people. Only the Union government can impose a ban on a film.