Friday, August 12, 2011

[ZESTCaste] Film producer moves India's Supreme Court against ban on film

Film producer moves India's Supreme Court against ban on film

Aug 12, 2011, 7:41 GMT

New Delhi - The producer of a controversial film on the theme of
caste-based reservations in educational institutions approached
India's Supreme Court on Friday seeking to get a ban lifted which had
been imposed on the film in three states.

The state governments of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Andhra Pradesh on
Thursday banned screening of the film on the grounds that it could
trigger violence.

The film has been cleared by India's Censor Board and is scheduled to
open in theatres across the rest of the country on Friday.

Prakash Jha, director and producer of Aarakshan in his petition to the
Supreme Court said the ban went against the spirit of freedom of
expression guaranteed in the Indian Constitution, his lawyer, Ameet
Naik, was quoted as saying by the Times of India newspaper.

At a press briefing in Mumbai Thursday, Jha had said minor changes had
been made in the film after objections were raised.

'There are certain dialogues and scenes that have been edited.
Reservation is not a necessity but a Constitutional truth and we have
been very careful about depicting it in the film,' Jha said.

The Indian government has for decades followed and expanded a policy
of reservation of places in educational institutions and in government
jobs for socially disadvantaged groups.

This has provoked criticism that few places are left for deserving
students and that it perpetuated social divisions.

This issue has, on occasion, led to violent demonstrations both for
and against the system of reservations.

Trade analyst Tarun Adarsh told NDTV news channel that the limited
opening would mean a loss of millions of rupees for the producers of
the film.

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