Allahabad High Court declines to act on Bhansali’s Ramleela as it has not been certified

NEW DELHI: The Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court has said it is not appropriate to pass any directions to the Central Board of Film Certification at this stage because the Board has not taken any decision on the matter so far.

The Bench of Justice Imtiyaz Murtaza and Justice Devendra Kumar Upadhyaya said the film has not yet been certified for public exhibition as required under Section 4 of the Cinematograph Act 1952 and hence the process of certification has not yet concluded. 

It said that at the time when CBFC examines the film for issuing certificate for public exhibition, it is expected that the Board will act in accordance with the provision of Cinematograph Act and other related laws.

The Court order came on a writ petition against Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s film Ramleela on allegations that the title has religious connotations and hurts the religious sentiments of Hindus.

Social activist Nutan Thakur said in the petition that the film slated for release on 15 November calls itself Ramleela of bullets. The official trailer of the film “shows abusive language and intimate scenes between Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone which are far away from the religious connotation the word ‘Ramleela’ carries”.

The petitioner had prayed for immediate change of the name of the film and banning of Promos or non-grant of a certificate by the CBFC if the producer does not do so.

Directed by Bhansali and produced by him and Kishore Lulla (Eros International), the film is loosely based on William Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’ but set in violent times. It stars Ranveer Singh, Deepika Padukone, Supriya Pathak, Richa Chadha, and Priyanka Chopra as guest artiste in an item number.

Bhansali has said he is paying an ode to his mother’s name with this film.

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