Extra-constitutional ban on films unfair: Javed Akhtar

New Delhi, March 3 (IANS) Veteran film writer and lyricist Javed Akhtar said imposing an “extra-constitutional ban” on films, especially those on sensitive subjects, is not a just practise.

A few days ago, Hansal Mehta, filmmaker of “Aligarh” — which delves on the life of a homosexual professor whose sexual orientation takes a toll on his job — claimed his movie has been banned in Aligarh over the apprehension that it shows the city’s culture in a bad light.

Later, district officials refuted the claim.

However, such bans and demands for bans have become common over time as far as films are concerned.

Asked to comment on it, Akhtar said at an event here on Thursday: “These things have nothing to do with culture. When the film ‘Fire’, starring Shabana (Azmi) and Nandita Das, was made, people had got it removed from several theatres.”

“… If you don’t like it, don’t watch it. People must not raise objections… Our films undergo censor certification; the censor board sees a movie, they give a clearance after seeing if there’s anything objectionable, then why resort to extra-constitutional removal?” Akhtar said.

“If you have a problem, question it, go file a court case… but don’t bully people into not showing a film. That’s unfair.”

Akhtar spoke here on the sidelines of an event held to launch Zee Classic’s new offering “The Golden Years 1950-1975, A Musical Journey with Javed Akhtar”, which celebrates the evergreen and magical melodies that emerged during the period.

The show, spanned across 26 weekly episodes, will go on air from March 6.

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