HC watches Dum Maro promos ahead of hearing

PTI, PANAJI | 14 April 2011 16:48 IST

The Goa bench of the Bombay High Court has moved the hearing on Rohan Sippy's forthcoming film Dum Maaro Dum to April 18.

The bench today watched the promos of the movie, which ran into controversy after a media professional, Savio Rodrigues filed a PIL in the court seeking a ban the release stating that it portrayed Goa and its people in bad light.

The film, starring Abhishek Bachchan, Bipasha Basu and Prateik, also evoked strong reaction from women's organisations here.

The lawyer of Fox Star Studios India Private Limited (FSSIPL), which is the distributor for the movie, told the bench that they have changed the "objectionable" dialogues in the movie, which is set to release on April 22.

The division bench comprising Chief Justice Mohit Shah and Justice S C Dharmadhikari, after watching the promos in the court hall on the laptop of one of the lawyers, fixed the hearing in the matter for next Monday.

Winnie Coutinho, representing the petitioner, told PTI that both the old promos (with the objectionable taglines) and the new ones after deletion of that content, were shown to the bench.

The petitioner has now said that entire movie be screened before the division bench before its theatrical release.

FSSIPL representative Dina Duttani said that they have no issues in showing the entire movie to the division bench.

"There is nothing in the movie that spells disrespect for the Goans," she said.

Duttani admitted that the objectionable part has been deleted from the film. But she rubbished the claim that they have changed the promos fearing court case.

"The promos always change whenever movie is nearing its release. Now the promos speak of the story line," Duttani, who heads FSSIPL's Business and legal section, said.

In the affidavit filed before the bench, FSSIPL has said that the film is a fictitious story about a drug mafia in Goa and its links with various foreign elements.

"The story is essentially about how a minister in Goa directs an honest police officer to eradicate the drug mafia," it adds.

The distributors have said that there is nothing in the film which could be construed as depiction of Goa or its citizens in negative light.

The FSSIPL affidavit also says that petition is a harassment. "The petitioners have deliberately approached the court at the last moment though press reports about the film have been prevalent for many weeks," Duttani says in the affidavit.

FSSIPL's case is that the story about drug mafia does not amount to a wrong portrayal, because media has widely covered drug-related or even sex-related offences in Goa.

"The film deals with only a couple of these issues that have been widely reported," the affidavit says. The film is about the victory of good over the criminal elements, it adds.

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