The Telegraph
Thursday, December 14, 2017

HC declines to stay order on screening S Durga

First published on 24-Nov-2017
Prasoon Joshi, Amish Tripathi, Yatindra Mishra, Vani Tripathi at the panel discussion on “Is Contemporary Cinema Reflecting the Literature of Our Times”, at the 48th International Film Festival of India (IFFI-2017), in Panaji, Goa on Wednesday. PTI Picture

Kochi, Nov. 24 (agencies): The Kerala High Court on Friday declined to stay a single bench order to screen the controversial Malayalam film S Durga in the Panorama section of the International Film Festival of India in Goa.

A division bench of Acting Chief Justice Antony Dominic and Justice A. Muhamed Mustaque refused to stay the single judge's order while admitting an appeal filed by the Union government.

The government has said the film, though selected by the jury, had not secured the exemption as required by the Panorama regulation in the absence of any certification from the Central Board of Film Certification.

It was also contended by the Centre that inclusion of the film is likely to upset the arrangements of the 48th IFFI, which comes to a close on November 28.

S Durga, which narrates the horrifying experience of a hitchhiking couple, was originally titled Sexy Durga. The government pulled it out of the IFFI even though the name was changed to S. Durga.

The director of the film, Sanal Kumar Sasidharan, moved the court after the film was dropped along with the Marathi film Nude.

According to the petitioner, the I&B ministry's decision to overrule the recommendation of the 13-member jury and pull out the two films was "unconstitutional".

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