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Sadda Haq movie banned in Punjab; Punjab police & bureaucratic pressure behind the ban

April 5, 2013 | By

Chandigarh/Punjab (April 05, 2013): It is learnt that the Punjab Government led by Parkash Singh Badal and his son Sukhbir Badal, has banned Sadda Haq Punjabi film that was termed as a part of Sikh history by Senior Badal Dal leader Bibi Kiranjot Kaur on March 17, 2013 during a special screening.

The Shiormani Gurudwara Prabhandak Committee (SGPC) had honored Kuljinder Sindu, the producer of Sadda Haq team and other member of the team. SGPC is currently controlled by Badal Dal and it’s president Avtar Singh Makkar had supported the movie.

The movie was reportedly banned by the Punjab Government on the late evening of April 04 where as it was scheduled to be released on April 05.

The movie shall be screened Chandigarh, Haryana and else where in India, besides United States, Canada, United Kingdom and Australia.

Note: As per recent information available with Sikh Siyasat News (SSN) the movie’s screening is prevented by the police in various theaters at Changidharh and Ambala.

“According to an official spokesman here, the step to ban the film till further orders has been taken to “maintain communal harmony” in the state”, the Indian Express has reported.

It is notable that Indian media is attempting to fabricate a controversy over the Baaghi, a promotional song released with the music of the movie. Many Indian media circles have claimed that controversy surrounding Baaghi song was the bases of the Punjab Government’s move to ban the movie but it’s not convincing because there is no such controversy except in biased media reports.

It is learnt that the movie was recently reviewed by high-ups in Punjabi police and the administration of Punjab government on whose recommendations the ban was imposed on the movie.

According to Times of India (TOI) “[t]he movie was screened at Punjab Bhawan by the film producers on Thursday evening, to get the approval from a team of IAS and IPS officers, comprising principal secretary to CM S K Sandhu, principal secretary (home) D S Bains, additional director general of police Hardeep Dhillon and chief secretary Rakesh Singh”.

The movie is based on real event of Punjab during 1980s-90s it portrays the widespread police torture and other inhuman practices that were part of the policing practice of that period. Many police officers including Punjab DGP Sumedh Saini are facing charges for heinous crimes, such as torture, murder/extra-judicial killings. Recently an SSP rank officer Preet Pal Singh Virk, besides some other Punjab police cops, was convicted by a CBI court for abduction, illegal confinement and custodial torture and was sentenced to undergo ten years of imprisonment. It is believed that the Punjab Government’s move to ban the moive is result of pressure exerted by the high-ups in Punjab police.

It is notable that the movie was previously banned by India’s Central Board of Film Certification. The review petition to the CBFC by the producers was also dismissed. On an appeal the Film Certification Appelate Tribunal (FCAT) had approved the movie and it was awarded “U” certificate which signifies that the movie may be watched by persons of any age.

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