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SGPC's two bids to stall release of Nanak Shah Fakir fails in SC

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

(SGPC) today made two unsuccessful attempts in the to stall the release of movie Nanak Shah Fakir, hitting theatres across the nation tomorrow.

The SGPC made the plea for the second time in afternoon after its first one was rejected in the morning.

A bench headed by refused for the second time to consider the SGPC submission that its plea be either heard today or tomorrow as it would be rendered infructuous as the movie is slated for release tomorrow.

The bench, also comprising Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud, had said in the forenoon that the SGPC plea would be heard on April 16.

"We are concerned with certification and the certification is there," the bench said, when P S Patwalia persisted with his submission that the plea be heard either today or tomorrow.

The bench, however, turned down the plea.

The of the movie has reportedly said that the movie will not be released in

Earlier in the day, the apex court had refused to accord an urgent hearing to the SGPC plea, seeking modification of its order allowing the release of the movie "Nanak Shah Fakir" across

The for SGPC Satender Singh Gulati, had submitted in the court that nobody should be allowed to portray the life of Sikh gurus, their families and the 'punj pyara' on screen.

The bench had also said that once a film has been approved for release by the Central Board of (CBFC), its screening can only be stalled through lawful means.

The bench had then listed the matter for hearing on Monday.

The top court had on April 10 criticised SGPC, the apex religious body of the Sikhs, for imposing restrictions on the film 'Nanak Shah Fakir' and had cleared the decks for its nationwide release scheduled on April 13.

It had said after the CBFC certification, no group, body, association or individuals can create any kind of disturbance in exhibition of the film.

The order had come on a petition by Harinder S Sikka, a retired of the film, who had approached the apex court claiming that the SGPC had recently banned the release of film which is based on the life and teachings of Sikhism's founder Guru Nanak Dev, even after the CBFC cleared it on March 28.

The bench had said the petition presented yet another picture of "many a private body endeavouring to curtail the freedom of expression of the idea of an scripted in celluloid language because they have a perception that there will be some kind of law and order situation if the film in question, namely, is released in movie halls."

The apex court had observed that encouragement of such activities has the potential to bring in "anarchy and cripple the right of freedom of speech and expression".

The bench had issued notice to the Centre and all the states and directed them to ensure that wherever the film is released, law and order is maintained and no one is allowed to create any disturbance.

The film was initially cleared by the CBFC on March 30, 2015, and was slated for release in April 2015, but after widespread protests, it was banned in for two months.

After the ban, Sikka had withdrawn its worldwide release. He claimed to have held deliberations with the SGPC on various issues relating to the movie and, as suggested, carried out the necessary modifications. Following this, he had again approached the CBFC for clearance.

The CBFC had again cleared the movie on March 28, 2018, but now the SGPC, through a letter dated March 30, has withdrawn its support to the movie.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, April 12 2018. 15:40 IST
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