The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) has formed a 7-member committee to review ‘Nanak Shah Fakir’. The Punjabi movie stirred a controversy as it portrays Guru Nanak in human form and screening was suspended in Punjab and Chandigarh.
"The committee will carry out an in-depth review of the movie and submit its report to SGPC," stated a press release issued here on Wednesday.
No time frame has been given for the committee to submit its report. The committee was formed on instructions of SGPC chief Avtar Singh Makkar.
Produced by Harinder Sikka, the Rs 35 crore movie 'Nanak Shah Fakir' was released on April 17 despite warnings from Sikh radical groups. Even the SGPC and Akal Takht jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh had objected to human portrayal of Guru Nanak and his elder sister Bebe Nanaki in the movie. Their contention was that such presentation of the gurus, their relatives and close associates is against Sikh tenets.
Sikka went ahead with the release claiming that the movie had been okayed by Giani Gurbachan Singh, who however denied this. A 5-member SGPC committee that was shown the movie took objections to the human portrayal of the guru.
It was on the bases of the committee's report that the SGPC executive asked the central government to impose a ban on the movie’s release.
However, the release of the movie was not allowed in Punjab and the Union Territory of Chandigarh. The Punjab government justified the ban on the grounds that its release could create a law and order problem in the state.
Despite drawing large crowds in New Delhi and other places, Sikka announced on April 21 that he was withdrawing the movie from theatres across the country and abroad. This announcement was made following a meeting with the Akal Takht jathedar in New Delhi.
"I have decided to withdraw the movie on the directions of the Akal Takht", Sikka had stated while claiming that his film had been well received by the public.
Read: On Akal Takht’s request, film producer agrees to withdraw ‘Nanak Shah Fakir’
The jathedar on his part appreciated the decision of Sikka and said that he would ask the SGPC to form a committee for reviewing the film in its present format and then suggest the parts that need to be deleted. Abiding by the directions of the Akal Takht, the SGPC finally formed a 7-member committee.
The committee after watching the film will pin point the objectionable parts. Sikka will then delete the parts which the committee finds objectionable.
Sikka himself had stated that the objectionable content "is not too much and it can be easily removed." Even after remaking the movie, he will first have to get a clearance from the SGPC before releasing it. Another committee may be formed later for reviewing the remake.