The Uttarakhand High Court on Thursday, December 6, refused to stay the release of forthcoming Bollywood film Kedarnath, starring debutante Sara Ali Khan along with Sushant Singh Rajput.
Swami Darshan Bharti of Garhwal had demanded that the film should be banned. The High Court said Bharti should go to the District Magistrate of Rudraprayag with his complaint.
A single bench of Chief Justice Ramesh Ranganathan was told the film should be banned as it was hurt people who were affected by the 2013 flash floods that ravaged Kedarnath besides hurting Hindu sentiments.
A senior BJP leader from Uttarakhand had first raised objections against the film, accusing it of promoting "love jihad" by depicting a romantic love story between a Muslim porter and a Hindu pilgrim.
Keeping in view the objections, the Uttarakhand government had formed a committee headed by Tourism Minister Satpal Maharaj and comprising Home Secretary Nitesh Kumar Jha, Director General of Police Anit Ratoori and Tourism Secretary Dilip Jawalkar
The petitioner pleaded that the film promoted "love jihad" -- a word coined by right-wing Hindu groups, to denote marriages between Muslim boys and Hindu girls.
A PIL was also filed in the Uttarakhand High Court alleging that the film was an "ugly taint" on the Himalayan shrine. However, the makers of the film have appealed to people not to jump to conclusions about its content by just seeing its teaser or trailer.
Keeping in view the objections, the Uttarakhand government had formed a committee headed by Tourism Minister Satpal Maharaj and comprising Home Secretary Nitesh Kumar Jha, Director General of Police Anit Ratoori and Tourism Secretary Dilip Jawalkar.
Headed by Maharaj, the committee set up on Wednesday, December 5, examined the objections being raised about the movie and submitted its report to the government.
The film is slated for nationwide release on Friday.