The oral observation was made by Justice N Nagaresh when hearing a writ petition filed by a lawyer named Peggy Fen alleging that the Lijo Jose Pellissery directorial makes excessive use of abusive and obscene language.
Churuli was released on SonyLIV on November 19. The fantasy mystery thriller, starring Chemban Vinod Jose, Vinay Forrt, and Joju George, is based on the short story Kaligeminarile Kuttavalikal by Vinoy Thomas. The film’s screenplay is written by S Hareesh, author of the popular novel Meesha.
According to the Live Law report, a video clip from Churuli was played in the courtroom during the hearing and the judge, after remarking that the dialogues were “atrocious,” proceeded to issue a notice to all respondents.
The plea from Peggy Fen stated that offensive words are used extensively and deliberately in the film to garner more attention. “Even though the movie Churuli is capable of evoking a sense of curiosity and mystery in the minds of the audience, there is an overdose of foul language. It contains obscene and filthy language which are opposed to public morality and tranquillity,” it claimed, and added that the words and phrases used in the film “outrage the modesty of women and children, leaving the viewers irritated and distressed.”
The plea also added that the words used by the characters in the film are not in public use and further stated that people would not use such words even in the privacy of their own homes. “More than exposure to this type of filthy language and explicit content, children, especially teenagers, could emulate deviant behaviour,” read the plea.
The petition requested the court to issue orders to promptly take the film down from the OTT platform.
Peggy Fen also alleged in her plea that the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) has violated its own rules and regulations by approving the release of the film. She urged the court to investigate how this happened. The lawyer noted that such a release could even attract provisions of the Indian Penal Code.
Meanwhile, the CBFC recently stated that the version of Churuli that premiered on the OTT platform is not the certified copy of the film. CBFC Thiruvananthapuram’s Regional Officer Parvathy V said, in a statement, “It is hereby clarified for the kind information of the general public that the Malayalam feature film Churuli, which is being exhibited via OTT platform SonyLIV, is NOT the certified version of the film.”
The statement further added that Churuli was certified A (adults only) with suitable excisions/modifications by the CBFC as per the Cinematograph Act of 1952, Cinematograph Certification Rules of 1983, and the guidelines issued by the Government of India.