Embroiled between political agendas and stringent censor rules just days before its release, substance abuse based film Udta Punjab has currently grabbed the attention of media and filmmakers as the fraternity stands together in support of Anurag Kashyap and his team over the ongoing battle between the makers of the film and the Censor Board. Amongst them is Karan Johar who decided to voice out his support for the film on a blog for a particular portal. Further, the filmmaker continued to lash out the stringent rules of the censor board which has even asked the makers of Udta Punjab for the removal of the word ‘Punjab’ from its title.
Reflecting the satire and sarcasm that Karan Johar is known for, his blog write-up also reveals a shade of anger as the filmmaker decides to stand up for his beliefs. Responding to the portrayal of drug abuse in Punjab and to the accusations that the Indian state is being portrayed in wrong light, Karan Johar said, “Are we supposed to say that drugs aren’t being consumed in parts of the country? No, no, everyone’s just high on mithai.” Further the Dharma Productions head honcho also clarifies on why he is standing up for Anurag Kashyap and other producers, despite the fact that he as a producer-director is known for happy and romantic films. He pleaded Bollywood as an industry to stand united during this time of censor trouble for Udta Punjab as he uninhibitedly describes the superficial word of this glamorous industry, his genuine request is to just bring together like-minded people in support of the film, to stand up against censorship and use their ‘freedom of speech’ expression.
“Offence is no longer defence – it’s a full-time profession. Every one is so offended all the time. The new police force that we weren’t told about: the moral police. No qualifications, no training, no understanding of actual morality, but they have a degree in the art of being offended. And mind you, if there’s an MBA, we’re heading fast towards it,” Karan Johar added in his blog.
He did not stop at that as he continued to show his disappointment towards the censor board which has recommended over 90 cuts for the film. “The censorship crisis, the moral policing, the politics of it has most of us on edge. I’m scared to use certain words: like if I use “Bombay”, will there be a problem? (Scratch that: yes, it already happened.) I am not supposed to use the word “beef”, I heard somewhere even Masterchef is swapping beef for, well, beep. And now, Punjab is apparently off limits. And to that I can only say: hahahaha, what on earth is happening?! It’s a place I love and I’m Punjabi and now, should I not be talking about Punjab myself?” added Karan.
The filmmaker turned actor finally expressed that he has a patriot still residing with him as he went on to say that, “See I’m a patriot too. I love my country, what we have stood for. Trouble is we’re not standing for it anymore. So really, can the scissor-happy please take that chill pill? It really works. I can attest.”