Shyam Benegal hails SC verdict on Padmaavat ban: Victory of freedom of expression

Shyam Benegal on Thursday hailed the Supreme Court's decision to strike down the ban against Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Padmaavat in some states.

By: Express Web Desk | Bengaluru | Updated: January 18, 2018 3:39 pm
Shyam Benegal on Padmaavat “It doesn’t make sense to anybody expcept for that little group of people who are creeating all the noise,” Shyam Benegal said.

Veteran filmmaker Shyam Benegal on Thursday hailed the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down the ban against Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmaavat in some states, saying it is clearly the victory of freedom of expression in the country.

Benegal, who chaired a Ministry of Information and Broadcasting committee to propose ways to revamp the censor board, told IANS that once the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) and the Supreme Court have given the movie a go-ahead, nothing can stop its release.

The Rajasthan, Gujarat and Haryana governments had banned the movie’s release in their states.

As for the organisations that are threatening to protest ahead of and when Padmaavat releases on January 25 over alleged distortion of historical facts, the state governments must intervene and ensure law and order is maintained, he said.

“The controversy is over. The film will be shown all over the country. The CBFC has anyway cleared the film and the Supreme Court has endorsed it. There is nothing to stop it except some people like (those from) Karni Sena and whoever they are… If they prevent it, then there will be a law and order situation, and the state government can take action against them,” Benegal told IANS over phone.

“Quite clearly, it’s a win for freedom of expression,” he added.

The 83-year-old director, known for his socially relevant movies like Ankur, Nishant, Manthan and Bhumika, wonders why questions are being raised against the movie, which the makers have clearly stated is based on 16th century poet Malik Muhammad Jayasi’s poem “Padmavat”.

“After all, the simple thing is that Padmavat is a classic. It was written in 1526 and not written yesterday or today. It is a classic work. We have accepted the literary classic which has been there since 1526 when Malik wrote it, and now the fact is that so many years later, some little organisation is saying that it is offending them and their sentiments. Does it make sense?

“It doesn’t make sense to anybody expcept for that little group of people who are creeating all the noise,” Benegal said, applauding the CBFC and Supreme Court’s “correct step” for the Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor starrer.

Chetan Bhagat also shared his reaction on Twitter and posted, “SC states censor approved #Padmaavat can’t be banned by states. Great decision. Every story can’t be told how bullies want it. Artists, just as anyone else, have freedom to express in India. The states involved should respect decision and curb bullies.”

Ayushmann Khurrana wrote, “Best news of the day which restores faith in our democracy : Supreme Court suspends ban imposed by 4 states on #Padmaavat, restrains other states from issuing similar orders.”

See tweets of Chetan Bhagat and Ayushmann Khurrana here:

CBFC on December 30 last year decided to grant a U/A certificate to the movie, subject to five modifications, including title change from Padmavati to Padmavat. The makers — Bhansali Productions and Viacom18 Motion Pictures — finally went with Padmaavat, and agreed to the other four points, maintaining that the movie glorifies Rajput pride, valour and honour.

However, Rajput outfit Shree Rajput Karni Sena has been adamant in its demand that the movie must not be screened.

Benegal said, “There is nothing to stop the state governments to act against these groups who are causing this problem, unless they are hand in glove with the group… What is going to prevent them?”

(With IANS inputs)

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  1. A
    Anil Kapoor
    Jan 18, 2018 at 6:51 pm
    The Void - I've never heard such bakwas in all my life.
    1. The Void
      Jan 18, 2018 at 3:46 pm
      HAS THIS BHANSALI SHOWN in this movie the violation of poor and defenseless Hindus to CONVERT them to cult of islam??? Or he has just licked feet of a terrorist like a typical slave?............. How poor and defenseless people were brutalized by terrorists like khilji, taimur and aurangjeb to convert them is a historical fact, but has these greedy hyenas have shown this fact???............ But you know whats the MOST MISERABLE FACT? its this, that after conversion, these converts call themselves muslims, they praise, defend, follow rapists, murders of their own family ancestors........... they even name their children after those tormentors! What a pity!!
      1. The Void
        Jan 18, 2018 at 3:46 pm
        SO HERE WE HAVE A MOVIE which has a third grade kingfisher calender girl playing role of an Immortal who is an epitome of Honor and Self-Esteem............a joker playing role of a terrorist called khilji and a director who has a history of slavery to underworld, working on direction of underworld terrorists...........Why shouldnt this movie be BOYCOTTED??........ Converts should ask themselves is it right to support a terrorist who brutalized, maimed your families to convert them to islamic cult??.......... We must all BOYCOTT this to show our support to the sacrifices made by our ancestors!! #### Share of Whatsap/Web-Sites
        1. The Void
          Jan 18, 2018 at 3:45 pm
          TOOLS OF CONVERSION BY MUGAL TERRORISTS :---- 1. VIOLENCE: Most were converted using this methodology, Which included beating, killing, kidnap, rape to convert people forcibily, terrorists like taimur, khilji, aurangjeb followed this mostly. -------- 2.TAXES: Very low taxes for those who convert and very high taxes for those stay Hindus, like Jazia, agriculture taxes and all other taxes ------- 3.LAWS and PUNISHMENTS: Laws were very harsh and harrasing for those who stayed Hindus, If anyone committed crime and choose to convert, he was given very less punishment. -------- 4.MONEY: Many were given greed of money to convert to islamic cult. -------- 5.LAND: Land was also given to some powerful but greedy and treacherous people if they convert..... SOURCE:: Various history books on medieval India, you can read yourself also....... Its was the great resistance and bravery of our previous generations who refused to convert and fought back that saved this land from becoming islamic state.