Supreme Court lifts ban on Punjabi movie Sadda Haq

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Sadda Haq
New Delhi, April 27: After watching the controversial Punjabi movie, the Supreme Court on Friday, April 26 lifted ban on the movie Sadda Haq. The producer of the movie --Kuljinder Sidhu and co-producer -- Dinesh Sood started celebrating their victory against the hurdles which had come from Punjab, Delhi, Haryana and many other state governments.

Expressing their gratitude towards the apex court, Sood was quoted as saying, "We are all overjoyed. Ever since the verdict came, we have been flooded with congratulators calls and messages from our well-wishers around the world. This verdict is proof that freedom of expression still prevails in our country."

Meanwhile, Sidhu said, "This is a landmark judgment which has not only come as a relief to us, but will also motivate film makers across the world to pick up new subjects for their films."

A bench of Chief Justice Altamas Kabir, Justice Anil R Dave and Justice Vikramajit Sen along with senior counsel Fali Nariman, Rajiv Dhawan, and Additional Solicitor General Rebecca John too watched the film inside the apex court premises.

The counsel for Punjab, Chandigarh and Delhi too were peesent at the screening of the film which is said to be based on the events in the 1980s and 1990s when the state suffered from militancy.

The ban on the film came after several senior government officials, including chief secretary of the state watched the film and decided to put a ban.

The apex court earlier had upheld the ban on the movie which was released worldwide on April 5. It is feared that the movie may create communal tension in the sensitive areas of the country.

Protesting against the state governments' decision of not allowing the screening of the movie in the states, the producer - Kuljinder Sidhu filed petition in the Supreme Court. The Sadda Haq (Our Rights) team urged the court to lift the ban.

However, the apex court bench of Chief Justice Altamas Kabir, Justice Anil R Dave and Justice Vikramajit Sen refused to take any hurried view on the aptness of the ban on the movie. The petitioner claimed that the state governments imposed the ban even after the film received No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the Central Board of Film Certification.

Clarifying his stand of moving the apex court, the producer was quoted as saying, "...I tried to meet deputy chief minister Sukhbir Badal in Delhi but I got no appointment. Hence I had no option but to file a petition with the Supreme Court against the ban."

"The film was banned to maintain communal harmony in the state and it won't be released in theatres till further orders," said a statement from the government.

The film is said to glorify the Khalistan movement and its leaders Jarnail Singh Bhindrawale, Balbir Singh Rajoana and Jagtar Singh Hawara.

OneIndia News

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