Director of Bengali film ‘Danga-The Riot’ on S.P. Mookerjee to move Calcutta High Court; police say ‘no ban’

As per reports, the director of a Bengali film based on the life of Jan Sangh founder Syama Prasad Mookerjee is planning to move the Calcutta High Court after a number of cinema hall owners across West Bengal refused to screen it under pressure from local administration and police.

The Kolkata Police, however, said there was no ban from the government on the film.

The Gajendra Chauhan starrer ‘Danga -The Riot’ is about the 1946 riots and the role played by the Jan Sangh founder. It also features a poem penned by Governor Kesari Nath Tripathi, and has been released in Bihar, Jharkhand, Agartala and Assam.

Director Milan Bhowmik has been reported to say that the film was scheduled to be screened in 103 movie halls across the state after its release on April 27. However, he said he received numerous calls from cinema hall owners, refusing to screen his movie.

“I will move Calcutta High Court on the matter on Monday. Despite certificate from CBFC my film has been blocked from screening. About 103 single screens cine halls were to run my film, but they refused to screen it under political pressure at the last moment. The theatre owners informed me that they have been asked to stop screening the movie by local administration,” he said.

The Kolkata Police denied Bhowmik’s claims, tweeting, “The claims of the director of “Danga” about the film not being allowed to release in WB are absolutely false. The Govt hasn’t banned the film. The onus is on theatres to screen it or not. Any threats can be reported to police…”

Bhowmik drew a parallel to the nationwide release of Padmaavat, pointing out that the state government had provided police protection to cinema halls screening the controversial movie. He claimed that he went to meet Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, but was not allowed to do so.

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