A month before its nationwide release, Akshay-Kumar-starrer 'Singh Is Bling' has run into trouble with the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), which has stated that "some of its content hurts Sikh sentiments".
Akshay's production company Grazing Goat Pictures and film producer Ashvini Yardi have been asked to halt the release until they have clearance from the SGPC. "Akshay Kumar or whoever the producers of this movie are must submit a print of the movie to the SGPC sub-committee we have formed for reviewing controversial films. Only after a clearance report from it should the movie be released," SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar stated here on Thursday.
Makkar said if the sub-committee recommended deletion of some scenes, the producer must comply. SGPC executive member Rajinder Singh Mehta leads the sub-committee with secretary Roop Singh, additional secretary Daljit Singh Bedi and assistant secretary Balwinder Singh Jaura as other members. The SGPC president said the decision to serve notice on the film producers was taken after Akal Takht jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh objected to some scenes.
Makkar agreed with the jathedar that if the producers released the movie without recommended cuts, they'd themselves be responsible for any outrage from the Sikh community. Asked if he had informed the producers, Makkar replied: "Well, I am informing them through the media now."
DSGMC okay not counted
Asked about the recent statement from the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) that it had cleared the movie 'Singh Is Bling' after a meeting with Akshay Kumar in Delhi, Makkar said: "This authority (to clear movies) is vested only in the SGPC, which is the sole representative body of Sikhs. Watching the movie at somebody's house and then inviting its makers to a gurdwara where they pay obeisance is no way of giving clearance."
The SGPC sub-committee was formed a couple of years ago when Ajay Devgn appeared as hero in 'Son of Sardaar' with a Lord Shiva tattoo on the chest. He flew down to Amritsar to hold a special screening for the sub-committee and agreed to delete the objectionable scenes before release.
In one of the dialogues, the hero mentions the Golden Temple in the same breath as taboo items, saying: "Punjab is famous for three things - the Golden Temple, liquor and meat."
A poster of the movie shows a bare-chested Akshay Kumar in the company of skimpily clad women when he is wearing a 'kara' (iron bangle, a Sikh symbol of faith) with verses from the Gurbani (Guru's word) inscribed on it.
Earlier films with issues
Harinder Singh Sikka's 'Nanak Shah Fakir' (2015): Human portrayal of the first Sikh Guru; film is to be remade and shown to the SGPC before release.
Harry Baweja's 'Chaar Sahibzaade' (2014): Human portrayal of Sikh Gurus (Baweja convinced the SGPC that it was not the case, since it was an animation movie)
Sunny Deol's 'Singh Saab the Great' (2013)): Only Takht jathedars can be addressed as Singh Sahib
Ajay Devgn's 'Son of Sardaar' (2012): Lord Shiva tattoo on the chest of the lead character, a Sikh
Akshay Kumar's 'Singh Is Kinng' (2008): Not portraying Sikh character in a right way
Sunny Deol's 'Jo Bole So Nihaal' (2005): Controversial title