LUCKNOW: A Complaint was filed in a Lucknow court on Thursday demanding criminal prosecution of filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali for holding a special screening of his controversial film, Padmavati, for three journalists without getting permission from the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).
The complaint, filed by a local lawyer Ashok Pandey, under Section 202 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC), was registered in the court of judicial magistrate (III). The statement of the complainant would be recorded on Friday. After that, the court would decide the admissibility of the complaint.
The complainant claimed that though the Censor Board had withheld certification of the film, Bhansali organised a special screening for Rajat Sharma of Indai TV, Arnab Goswami of Republic TV and Ved Prakash Vedik.
He submitted that such screening was an offence under Section 7 of the Cinematography Act and was punishable by up to three years of imprisonment and Rs 1 lakh penalty.
Last Saturday, CBFC chairman Prasoon Joshi had also criticised Sanjay Leela Bhansali and the producers of Padmavati for screening the film for select media houses early last week even before it was certified by the board.
However, both Rajat Sharma and Arnab Goswami had defended Bhansali’s Padmavati on their respective shows last Friday, saying there was nothing in it to hurt the sentiments of Rajputs. Rather, the film was a befitting tribute to Rajput pride.
Meanwhile, the movie was cleared uncut by British censors. “Padmavati (12A) moderate violence, injury detail,” stated the official website of the the British Board of Film Classification.
Fresh plea to stall release of film abroad
The Supreme Court on Thursday agreed to hear on November 28 a fresh plea seeking a direction to the makers of Padmavati not to release it outside India on December 1. The British censor board has cleared the film without cuts.