Freedom of expression for artists in India seem to get more constricted by the day. Now protests against movie releases are not restricted to just a particular religion. Religious groups seem too fragile to see their leaders being depicted cinematically. The latest to fall prey to the attack is Nanak Shah Fakir which is based on the life of the first Sikh Guru.
The film is now being reported to be banned by the Punjab government. The ban was declared by Gurkirat Kirpal, special principal secretary to chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh on Tuesday afternoon. The confirmation comes after the Supreme Court instructed all the states of India to ensure a smooth release for the film. The ruling was given by a bench consisting of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justice AM Khanwilkar and Justice DY Chandrachud. Chief Justice Misra said, “Once the CBFC grants the certificate, there can't be any kind of impediment for the exhibition of the film. It is well settled that once the CBFC grants a certificate, it is final.”
But the state of Punjab seem to defy the SC instruction following protests by Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) and Akal Takht jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh groups. They protested against the depiction of Guru Gobind Singh a human form. The latest trailer of the film shows the Guru not in a human form but as a mass of light.
The film was initially scheduled for a 2015 release but was stalled following protests. Akshay Kumar is currently promoting the film which he said is close to his heart.