Delhi High Court rejects ban plea on The Accidental Prime Minister trailer
The court instructed the petitioner, fashion designer Pooja Mahajan, to file the matter as a Public Interest Litigation and not in her personal capacity
The Delhi High Court on Monday refused to entertain a plea seeking a ban on the trailer of The Accidental Prime Minister, directing the petitioner to file it as a Public Interest Litigation (PIL).
Directed by Vijay Ratnakar Gutte, The Accidental Prime Minister stars Anupam Kher in the role of former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. The film is adapted from Sanjaya Baru’s 2014 book of the same name, which alleges that Singh did not have full control over his cabinet and was a victim of the Congress party’s dynasty politics.
In her plea, petitioner Pooja Mahajan — a Delhi-based fashion designer, who had filed the plea in her personal capacity — alleged that the film’s trailer was harming the image of the office of the prime minister and giving it a bad name internationally. The plea urged the court to issue the direction to the Centre, Google, YouTube and the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) to suspend the exhibition and display of the trailer.
Noting that Mahajan stated in the first paragraph of the petition that she has no personal interest in the issue, the court asked for the matter to be filed as a PIL. The court added that a PIL is heard by a division bench and not a single judge.
Mahajan's petition mentioned that according to CBFC guidelines, films based on real-life characters need to obtain No Objection Certificates (NOCs) from the respective personalities portrayed on screen. "By performing the character of Manmohan Singh, (ex-PM), Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi, the performing actors/ artists have committed offences punishable under sections 416 (cheating by impersonation) of the IPC and therefore, the CBFC could not have given the certificate for screening/ exhibition of the film," it claimed.
The Accidental Prime Minister is produced by Sunil Bohra and Jayantilal Dada. The film is scheduled to release on January 11.