SC strikes down ban on Padmavati

New Delhi, January 18: The Supreme Court on Thursday lifted the ban on the Padmaavat and cleared its release. The SC stayed notifications and orders issued by the states of  Rajasthan and Gujarat prohibiting release of the film in their states and the movie will release on January 25 in all states, across the country.

The apex court has also restrained any other state from issuing such orders prohibiting exhibition of the movie.

A bench including Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud and headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra observed that the states are obliged to maintain law and order.

“We direct that there shall be a stay of operation on the notification and orders issued and we also restrain other states from issuing such notifications or orders in this matter,” the bench said in its interim order.

The makers of the movie, Viacom 18, and other producers were represented by senior advocates Harish Salve and Mukul Rohatgi; and they told the bench that states have no power to issue such notifications banning exhibition of a film when the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) has given a certificate of release.

The bench has posted the matter for further hearing in March.

The producers had approached the apex court challenging the ban issued by six states– Gujarat Rajasthan, Haryana and Madhya Pradesh, Uttarakhan, Himachal Pradesh– prohibiting exhibition of the film.

Governments of Haryana, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan had declared that they will not allow screening of the movie, citing the reason that the Bollywood period drama portrays Rajput culture in poor light.

The producers told the court that the movie has undergone all changes that were suggested by the CBFC, including a change in the title of the movie.

The film is based on the life of Rajput queen Padmavati, Maharaja Ratan Singh and Sultan Alauddin Khilji of Delhi. Ever since the poster of the movie was released, the film and the film makers have been facing severe from many political parties and religious groups.