New Delhi, June 7 (IANS) Censoring ‘Udta Punjab’ will not solve the drug problem in Punjab, Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi said on Tuesday amid controversy over the censor board demanding removal of any reference to Punjab in the movie.
“Punjab has a crippling drug problem. Censoring ‘Udta Punjab’ will not fix it. The government must accept the reality and find solutions,” Rahul Gandhi said in a tweet.
The Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC), chaired by BJP-appointed Pahlaj Nihalani, demanded the removal of any reference to Punjab in “Udta Punjab” — a forthcoming film on the drug issue plaguing the state.
The CBFC is said to have reportedly demanded an alteration of the narrative with as many as 89 cuts. The makers were apparently even asked to drop ‘Punjab’, and it was suggested that the film be set in a fictitious setting instead of a particular state.
The film fraternity has protested the CBFC move, blaming political pressure from the ruling Akali Dal-BJP coalition in Punjab, where the extent of the substance abuse is placed by several surveys at over 70 per cent of the state’s 2.8 crore population.
The movie comes when the state is less than nine months away from assembly elections.