Udta Punjab gets A certificate by CBFC, HC order on cuts likely today

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • Updated: Jun 13, 2016 11:18 IST
The CBFC had on June 6 suggested 13 cuts for Udta Punjab.

The Bombay high court (HC) is likely to pass its order on the cuts suggested by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) for Anurag Kashyap’s Udta Punjab on Monday. The CBFC’s suggestions of 89 cuts in the film was challenged in the court by Kashyap’s Phantom Films.

CBFC chief Pahaj Nihalani, on Sunday, said that the board had awarded an A certificate to the film after suggesting 13 cuts.

Read: Cleared Udta Punjab with 13 cuts under A certificate, says Nihalani

A poster of Udta Punjab.

On Friday, Phantom Films had agreed to delete a scene, in which the lead character of the movie, Tommy, is shown urinating before a crowd, after the court insisted it must go. The division bench of justice SC Dharmadhikari and justice Shalini Phansalkar-Joshi said it will pass an order on the remaining cuts suggested by the CBFC on Monday.

Read: HC asks CBFC not to be overly critical of Udta Punjab

Shahid Kapoor plays Tommy Singh, a rockstar who is also a drug addict in Udta Punjab.

The CBFC had on June 6 suggested 13 cuts for the film. The HC judges on Friday said the CBFC should change its approach with changing times and let people decide what is good and what is bad. During the hearing, the Bombay high court (HC) had said the term ‘censor board’ was coined by the media and it was pleased to note the CBFC does not mention and treat itself as a censor board, but instead considers itself the board of film certification. The court indirectly reminded the CBFC its job was to certify films for public exhibition, and not to censor them.

Read: Amid Udta Punjab controversy, CBFC clears Punjabi film on drugs

“You have the power of certifying films for public exhibition,” the court said, adding, “The word censor does not appear anywhere in the [Cinematograph] Act, except in your mind. Everybody has a choice. Let people decide whether a movie is good or bad… Hand over the remote to people – let them decide what to watch and when to switch off, whether it is television or cinema. If they [film producers] produce bad movies, they will suffer in the long run.”

In Udta Punjab, Alia Bhatt plays a Bihari migrant who was an aspiring hockey player forced to indulge in drug trafficking due to circumstances.

CBFC counsel advocate Advait Sethna had said the filmmakers had not only used abusive and offensive language, but have also shown the northern state of Punjab in poor light.

Watch Udta Punjab trailer

The counsel for Phantom Films, senior advocate Ravi Kadam, pointed out the board has cleared trailers of the film with UA certification, and one of the trailers contains the song containing the so-called offensive and abusive words.

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