The Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) has given Udta Punjab an ‘A’ certificate, and has cleared the way for its release this Friday. The Bombay High Court, in its ruling yesterday, had observed that the CBFC ‘does not have the power to censor films’.
The court has asked the filmmakers to cut just one scene – reportedly, the one that shows Shahid Kapoor’s character Tommy Singh urinating in front of an audience, and has directed the CBFC to issue an ‘A’ certificate to the movie. “Cut 9 (the urinating scene) justified. Much material for filmmakers to drive home their point even without this scene,” said the judge.
Udta Punjab, directed by Abhishek Chaubey, depicts the alleged drug menace in Punjab. The controversy over the film began when the CBFC demanded 89 cuts to the film. It had also asked the filmmaker to remove all references to Punjab from the film. This did not go down well with the film fraternity, many of whom stepped out to support Chaubey. The whole issue quickly degenerated with both sides indulging in an all out offensive against each other. Following this, Anurag Kashyap, the film’s producer, approached the Bombay High Court on June 10.
In its ruling, the high court bench is known to have said, “The board should use its powers as per the constitution and the Supreme Court’s directions.” The court had further said, “The worth of a film should be viewed in its entirety instead of seeing isolated factors like dialogues, songs, lines, among other things. There are so many litigants awaiting Justice. The case of Udta Punjab is hardly the sort that must be brought to the highest court of the State”.
Udta Punjab, starring Shahid Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor, Alia Bhatt among others, is set to hit the screens on June 17.