The much-hyped controversial film Shooter has been the talk of the town since the day it got announced. After it got banned in Punjab on February 9, the Punjab and Haryana high court had directed the Haryana government and Chandigarh Administration to decide on the ban demanded by a lawyer on the release of Shooter, a film based on the life of a slain gangster named Sukha Kahlon.
Now, according to fresh reports, Shooter has been banned in Haryana too!
The Haryana government has imposed a ban on the film after an order was issued by Vijai Vardhan, additional chief secretary (home), on Thursday. The order stated that the suspension of the screening/exhibition of the movie in the state shall remain in force for two months. A copy of the state government's decision has been sent to all the deputy commissioners and senior police functionaries for compliance.
Appearing before the court, the defense counsel of the filmmakers was heard saying that they've filed a petition against the ban of the film in Punjab. The counsel stated that the ban is arbitrary where explaining Section 6 in the Cinematograph Act, 1952, he further added that no state government can ban the film before it is publicly exhibited. He even raised questions to the government like 'Does no one have a right to expression?' and 'If a producer is showing socially good subjects then can he not show the social evils too?'. He further blamed Punjab government for obstructing the fair dealing of the Censor Board of Film Certification (CBFC) by creating undue pressure on them to not pass the film for public viewing. He even said that the film's screening in CBFC has been applied since January 25th but to date, it has not been screened there, neither has anyone else seen it including the CM of Punjab.
The court will hear the arguments on this case on Monday, February 24.
The counsel also denied that the film's story is based on gangster Sukha Kahlon saying that it is only an apprehension which even the producer has denied. He further said that without watching the film no one can confirm whether the film is based on the gangster's life or not.
What is Section 6 in the Cinematograph Act, 1952
6. Revisional powers of the Central Government.—
(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Part, the Central Government [may, of its own motion, at any stage,] call for the record of any proceeding in relation to any film which is pending before, or has been decided by, the Board, [or, as the case may be, decided by the Tribunal (but not including any proceeding in respect of any matter which is pending before the Tribunal)] and after such inquiry, into the matter as it considers necessary, make such order in relation thereto as it thinks fit, and the Board shall dispose of the matter in conformity with such order: Provided that no such order shall be made prejudicially affecting any person applying for a certificate or to whom a certificate has been granted, as the case may be, except after giving him an opportunity for representing his views in the matter:
[Provided further that nothing in this sub-section shall require the Central Government to disclose any fact which it considers to be against public interest to disclose.]
(2) Without prejudice to the powers conferred on it under sub-section (1), the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, direct that—
(a) a film which has been granted a certificate shall be deemed to be an uncertified film in the whole or any part of India; or
(b) a film which has been granted a “U” certificate 27 [or a “UA” certificate or a “S” certificate] shall be deemed to be a film in respect of which an “A” certificate has been granted; or
[(c) the exhibition of any film be suspended for such period as may be specified in the direction:] [Provided that no direction issued under clause (c) shall remain in force for more than two months from the date of the notification.]
(3) No action shall be taken under clause (a) or clause (b) of sub-section (2) except after giving an opportunity to the person concerned for representing his views in the matter.
(4) During the period in which a film remains suspended under clause (c) of sub-section (2), the film shall be deemed to be an uncertified film.]