Finally Supreme Court comes to forward to save Aarakshan from the unjustified ban imposed by th UP government. Last Tuesday, the Supreme Court issued a notice raising questions over Uttar Pradesh government’s decision following a petition by film’s director Prakash Jha that challenged the ban.
Justice Mukundakam Sharma and Justice Anil R. Dave issued the oreder as a bench and Harish Salve, senior counsel represented Prakah Jha in the hearing last Friday. The bench also took into consideration the submissions made from Punjab and Andhra Pradesh, where similar bans were lifted from release of Aarakshan after filing of writ petitions.
The counsel appealed to the court for a stay order over the ban on release of Aarkshan in UP and stressed over the fact that the Censor Board had already viewed and analysied the movie and it also certified Aarakshan.
However, no stay order could be passed without hearing the government’s point of view and the reason for banning the movie in Uttar Pradesh state. The jury asked the UP government to file its answer to the writ petition. Justice Sharma clarified that the bench could not stay the order before hearing the other side. Arakshan, which stars Saif Ali Khan, Amitabh Bachchan, and Deepika Padukone, has been given U/A certificate to be released and shown in all theatres all over India. Petitioner and director Prakash Jha stated that the movie Aarakshan was not anti-Dalit or against lower caste as accused by opponents and he always had sympathy for the down-trodden section of the society. He said his movie only depicted the real situation on reservation issue as a background in the movie.
The ban, according to Prakash Jha, was totally unconstitutional and violated his fundamental right of freedom of expressiom under Article 19(1) (a). Therefore, he pleaded for a quick removal of the ban order to allow screening of Aarakshan in time.