The decision of the Mayawati government on Wednesday night to ban the release of Prakash Jha's controversial Hindi film ‘Aarakshan'(Reservation) in Uttar Pradesh for two months on the grounds of law and order followed a recommendation by a high-level official committee set up by the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) government.
The film was due to hit the screens on Friday in the State.
The committee comprising Principal Secretaries of the Finance, Information, Higher Education and Rural Development Departments and an official of the Entertainment Tax Committee had watched the Amitabh Bachchan-Saif Ali Khan starrer and submitted their report to the State government in the evening.
Hours before the State government imposed the ban, the National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) asked the Censor Board to make necessary changes in the film before its release, objecting to the “derogatory way” the backward community had been featured in it.
The move by the Commission came after its members watched a special screening in Delhi.
“The main theme of the movie is about commercialisation of education followed by several objectionable dialogues against people from backward communities. There is no discussion on reservation in its second half. We have asked the Censor Board to make necessary changes in it,” NCSC Chairman P.L. Punia told PTI in Delhi.
Senior Maharashtra Minister and OBC leader Chaggan Bhujbal also voiced objections to certain scenes and dialogues in the film.
“Some scenes and dialogues in the film are objectionable and the film can be released after deleting them,” Mr. Bhujbal said after a special screening of the film was arranged by Mr. Jha in Mumbai.
Keywords: Aarakshan controversy