Movies

MP follows Rajasthan, bans UTV's Jodhaa-Akbar

MUMBAI:The problems facing UTV‘s Hrithik Roshan-Aishwarya Rai starrer Jodhaa-Akbar are spreading. Madhya Pradesh joined the neighbouring state of Rajasthan in banning the film after demonstrations against it by the Rajput community at cinema theatres.

The ban on Jodhaa-Akbar in the two states have essentially killed the film‘s prospects from middle India. If that were not enough, the district administration of Ambala in Haryana state have also imposed a ban on the screening of the film following similar protests by the Rajput organisations.

"The government has suspended the screening of the movie in the (Madhya Pradesh) state with immediate effect as protests at cinema halls have posed a threat to maintenance of peace," commercial tax department additional secretary DPS Parihar was quoted as saying after the ban was invoked.


In his order banning the screening of the film, Parihar said the decision was taken in accordance to provisions under the Madhya Pradesh Cinema (Regulation) Act, 1952.


Speaking to Indiantelevision.com, UTV Motion Pictures director Siddharth Roy Kapur said: "Talks are going on with the respective authorities and we expect the film to resume very soon in the theatres."


There are also some reports that if the ban is not revoked, exhibitors may institute a shutdown in protest. However, there have been no confirmations made from the exhibitors‘ end on this as yet.


"The multiplexes will earn huge revenue losses if such bans keep taking place. Once the films are passed by the censor board there is no reason as to why such incidents should take place. The issue should be taken up at the district or state level depending upon where the ban has taken place," said Cinemax VP marketing and programming Devang Sampat.


Meanwhile in a text message to Indiantelevision.com, UTV Software Communications CEO Ronnie Screwvalla confirmed that he would be moving the courts if the ban was not revoked.


The film‘s director Ashutosh Gowarikar was quoted as saying, "I am very sad that people are appreciating the movie in cities but the film is not being screened in some places. We are getting a good response from overseas. I want people to watch the film first and then express their views."

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