Today in Hot and Stupid News!
The Mexico of our country, epicentre of Drug trade in India, Punjab, is denied a look into the mirror, a look at truth. A film certification board (Central Board for Film Certification aka CBFC aka censor board aka Ban Central aka ‘Ban’chod) acts as a self-fashioned agent to control creativity and freedom of expression to serve political needs. While facts remain muddied, it is best assumed that there will be some time before Punjab gets a taste of its own medicine/drugs before Udta Punjab (or CutTa Punjab, after the 89 censor cuts) is released to the masses.
Well, release an adult rated comedy movie with melons on a broomstick playing sultry in a swimming pool, show it to children and no one bats an eye. Show to them, the reality, the deteriorating condition of the youth and suddenly everyone loses their mind!
Someone badly needs a priority check.
‘Udta Punjab’. The movie is to be released on the 17th of June, worldwide, and features the rather obviousl ongoing drug problem among the youth, to put it blandly. What’s shocking is, that the movie is banned by CBFC, to ensure the ‘hiding’ of this problem because hello? Who needs a reality check after all? Ignorance is comforting.
Not only is the film industry involved in the row, but the controversy over the movie ‘Udta Punjab’ could not have come at a better time for the opposition parties in Punjab.
The movie has been quite strategically (either deliberately or coincidentally) slated for release at the time when the CM, Parkash Singh Badal, and the President of SAD, were at pains to emphasize that Punjab has been defamed as the drugs hub of the country.
The banning of the movie on top of that, has served as the cherry on top of the cake. When the movie promos were released and fast became a hit in the state, the state government scrambled to launch an aggressive advertisement blitz on FM channels to counter the growing popularity of the movie and its “Chitta” song in the state. Terming the move to impose cuts on the movie as “foolish”, Sunil Jakhar, Congress MLA and a former leader of opposition says, “This is the harsh reality of the state as well as the country. The Prime Minister himself referred to this problem in his weekly radio address ‘Mann Ki Baat‘. You cannot hide the truth.” Jakhar adds that instead of coming down hard on the movie makers, the government should come down hard on the drug dealers in Punjab. It is, therefore, very clear that the individuals involved in censoring of the movie or those speaking against the censorship see nothing but their own skins and ways to benefit it.
On 3 June, in broad day light two motorcyclists shot dead a local money changer in Jalandhar. According to reports police suspect a ‘hawala money dispute’. Easy money coming from drug trade in Punjab has many disturbing offshoots; hawala and gang war are some of it.
And with each aspect slowly coming to light, and the Akalis having used every trick in the book to save their skins, they finally seem to be fleecing by themselves.
The censorship Board removed the ban on the movie, on the terms that the word “Punjab” be cropped out of the title, since it leads to the state’s defaming. In addition, the CBFC asked the makers of Udta Punjab to remove all references to Punjab and its cities must be like manna from heaven. Although, according to a statistical study, the rate of drug consumption by youth is the highest in Punjab. Now the question is, if Udta Punjab is forced to remove the Punjab context (the Censor Board is said to have proposed the movie be based on a fictional state) will it remove Punjab’s drug problem? The obvious answer is – No. Infact, only if the state is targeted regarding the problem, will any action be taken against the drug dealers and the consumption of drugs be remotely affected.
Whom are you betraying? Your own people. If you do not acknowledge the problem how will you make genuine effort to find a solution?
Behind this whole concept of censorship and the absurd notion of protecting its citizens from cuss words lies a colonial mentality on part of our government.Why should taxpayers’ money and the time of the government be wasted on preventing the release of a movie on drug abuse rather than using it as a tool to arrest the crisis?
Also, the success of a film depends upon its reception. It’s always the viewers that decide the fate of any movie. And undeniably, the youth is eagerly waiting for the movie to be released, claiming it’s going to be a big hit! If naming Udta-Punjab Udta-XXX solves Punjab’s drug problem, go ahead and ban it.
Basically, the CBFC trying so hard to turn off the location for the movie, is a frantic attempt at saving their battery for another term for the Akali. What next, release the movie on Snapchat, lest you see more than you need to?
But then again. Priotiy check, people.
About The Author
“Adarsh Raj is The Wolf of All Streets, who takes life as it comes in his face, and runs down his chin. We catch flies with honey, but he catches more hunnies being fly. Matter of fact, he didn’t choose the the thug life, the thug life chose him.
Oh and he stole my girl !!!” – Everyone else