‘Padmavati’ passes Brit censor test; education officer in MP issues circular banning its songs in schools

New Delhi/Bhopal/London: Sanjay Leela Bhansali flick Padmavati, mired in a huge row at home, was cleared uncut by British censors even as the Supreme Court agreed on Thursday to hear a plea seeking directions that the movie is not released outside India on December 1.
A functionary at Viacom 18, however, said there was no plan to release the film globally without it being cleared by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).
The controversy over the alleged “distortion of history” raged on with an education officer in Madhya Pradesh’s Dewas district issuing a circular banning a song from the film from being played in schools. The circular was, however, soon withdrawn and a show cause notice issued to the officer who issued it.
In the Supreme Court, a bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud said it would hear on Tuesday, a plea that alleged that the makers of “Padmavati” misrepresented facts with regard to the censor board’s approval on releasing songs and the promo.
“We will take it up on Tuesday. You (advocate) file a writ petition,” the bench told advocate M L Sharma who mentioned his fresh plea for an urgent hearing.
Sharma also alleged that grave damage will be done to social harmony if the movie was allowed to be released outside India.
He sought criminal prosecution of the makers of the movie for allegedly misrepresenting facts that the songs and promos were cleared by the CBFC.
The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC), meanwhile, passed the film without cuts.
“‘Padmavati’ (12A) moderate violence, injury detail,” stated the official website of the British censor board. “All known versions of this work passed uncut,” it said.
The 12A rating means the film cannot be viewed in UK by a child under 12 years unless accompanied by an adult.
However, sources at Viacom 18 said they were not planning to release the film anywhere in the world without the CBFC nod.
As the film was suppose to release on December 1, there are over 50 countries where this process (of certification) is on, he said.
The lavishly mounted film, starring Deepika Padukone in the title role, and Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor, is a joint production by Viacom 18 Motion Pictures and Bhansali Productions.
In Dewas, district education officer (DEO) Rajiv Suryavanshi directed all government and private schools to stop using the film’s song, titled ‘Ghoomar’, during cultural programmes.
“Shri Rashtriya Rajput Karni Sena has submitted a request letter in the honour of Maa Padmavati. It was requested that Hindu sentiments should not be offended by playing ‘Ghoomar’ song in the cultural programmes being organised in schools. So, do not use ‘Ghoomar’ song in the cultural programmes in schools,” read the circular issued on Wednesday.
However, Dewas Collector Asheesh Singh said he has directed the education officer to withdraw the circular with immediate effect.
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