The film is expected to hit hundreds of screens across the state on Wednesday.
The late night verdict by Justice K Venkataraman in favour of Kamal’s Rajkamal International has come as a great relief for the filmmaker who scripted, produced and directed the thriller at a cost of Rs 95 crore, though Muslim organisations, which took umbrage over the alleged bad portrayal of the community, are said to be considering appealing the decision. It is believed that the state government would also appeal against the order.
The state government, which prohibited the screening for two weeks, citing law and order concerns, argued vehemently against the release of the film, stating that public order was more important than petitioner’s right of expression and freedom.
Advocate General A Navaneethakrishnan raised serious allegations that the whole certification procedure by the Censor Board was a “big scam”, adding that there should be an inquiry by an agency chosen by the court.
Appearing for the production house, advocate P S Raman charged that the state government’s claim of intelligence inputs and apprehensions over law and order problems were an attempt to stall the movie. He added that the district collectors had passed identical orders as per instructions of the Home Secretary. If the screening of the film was stopped, it would ruin Kamal Haasan who, he said, had invested his lifetime earning in the project.
Appearing for the Centre, Additional Solicitor General P Wilson said that after a film is certified by the Censor Board, the state government has no powers to bar screening. Wilson said due process was followed in granting the certification to the film, and presented relevant files to back the claim.
The arguments by counsels representing the filmmaker, state government, Union government and Muslim organisations went on for several hours on Tuesday. The judge had first said that the verdict would be delivered by 8.30 pm, which was later extended to 10 pm. The state government’s plea to stop passing the order till Wednesday morning, so as to enable it to go on appeal was turned down.
David song removed
Mumbai: Director Bejoy Nambiar has removed the song Ya Hussain from his upcoming film David over allegations that it hurt religious sentiments of Muslims. The song by Lucky Ali accompanied a sequence in the film which showed a Moharram procession. “We did not intend to hurt anybody’s religious sentiments through this song. I apologise, if in any way it has unintentionally done so,” Nambiar said. PTI