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U certificate for War and Peace
April 24, 2003 19:22 IST
The Mumbai high court today ordered the Central Board of Film Certification to issue a 'U' certificate to filmmaker Anand Patwardhan's anti-nuclear documentary, War and Peace, within a week, without imposing cuts or making additions to the footage.
Justice Hemant Gokhale and Justice Ranjana Desai said the cuts ordered by the Censor Board were an integral part of the film and could not be deleted. They added the parts ordered cut were not out of context and were picturised by Patwardhan without prejudice.
The court upheld Patwardhan's argument that he had the freedom to express himself and the Board's decision to impose cuts and make additions amounted to an infringement of his constitutional right.
Patwardhan argued the suggested additions were being introduced to derive 'political mileage.' The Board reportedly suggested a shot to show a probe was on with regard to the Tehelka expose of the defence scam.
Patwardhan had moved the high court, pleading the Board be directed to grant a certificate to his documentary, which focused on the nuclear issue between India and Pakistan and its fallout. In keeping with a court directive, he had also arranged a special screening of the film for the judges.
The Board had suggested deleting certain scenes like the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi and references to Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and President A P J Abdul Kalam.
War and Peace was awarded the best documentary film and international jury prize at the 2002 Mumbai International Film Festival.