Court paves way for release of documentary on Kabir

Indo Asian News Service

New Delhi, March 9 (IANS) The Delhi High Court Wednesday paved the way for the release of a 100-minute documentary film 'Had Anhad', based on poet Kabir, asking the censor board to give it appropriate certification. The court also told the central government to pay Rs 10,000 as litigation costs to the film maker.

Praising the hard work of makers of 'Had Anhad', Justice S. Muralidhar said: 'Consequently, the impugned orders dated May 28, 2010 of the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT) and the order of Nov 5, 2009 of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) are hereby set aside.'

'The film 'Had Anhad' will forthwith be granted a 'V/U' certificate of unrestricted viewing by the CBFC without any of the excisions directed in terms of the impugned orders of the CBFC and the FCAT. The writ petition is allowed with costs of Rs.10,000 which will be paid by Union of India to the petitioner within four weeks,' said the court.

The court was hearing the petition filed by Srishti school of art, design and technology that had challenged the order of the FCAT upholding three of the four excisions ordered by the CBFC while granting the film a 'V/U' Certificate.

The documentary demonstrates how the barriers of regions, borders, languages, religions, nationalities and nations melt away in Kabir's universal message of love and compassion.

'A viewer who stays to see the film till its end is unlikely to be left feeling hateful or vengeful towards any religion or community. The viewer might be impelled to contemplate on the futility of bigotry and violence,' said the court.

The film is part of the Kabir Project, which was started in 2003 by award-winning film-maker Shabnam Virmani.

The project brings together the experiences of a series of journeys in quest of this 15th century mystic poet in our contemporary world.

It provides an insight into Kabir's poetry, capturing its intensity primarily through enthralling music. Journeys to central and western India and across the border to Pakistan reveal an interesting tale.

The film opens a door to the world of Kabir, through the public and private lives of folk singers of central India, Rajasthan and Pakistan.