Film Director, Producer and Publicist Arrested

The controversial film poster

MUMBAIL (3rd December 2011) – The Mumbai police arrested 3 persons related with the Bollywood movie “Who’s There”, namely Ejaz Ahmed (Director), Washim Sheikh (Producer) and KA Jauhar (publicists) on charges ranging from hurting religious sentiments (295A), malicious common intention (34) to insulting religious beliefs and similar provisions, besides violations under the Cinematograph Act, which are all non-bailable offenses.

The three  were produced before Additional Chief  Metropolitan Magistrate (Court 9 at Bandra), Mr. VA Patil, who remanded them to judicial custody at Arthur Road Jail and their bail application will come up on Monday, 5th December, 2011 for hearing.

Community groups like The Catholic Secular Forum (CSF), Association of Concerned Catholics (AOCC) and CROSS have opposed the bail and demanded severest punishment for the accused.

The CSF general secretary, Joseph Dias speaking to the media outside the court, said that conviction should not be difficult as the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC), Film Makers Combine and the Indian Motion Pictures Association (IMPPA) had all in their statement to the police said that the offensive advertisements of stabbing Jesus Christ on the Cross, were unauthorised and section 6A and 7 of the Cinematograph Act were violated.

Advocate Archie Sodder of the AOCC, on whose complaint the Mahim police station filed an FIR said that the AOCC were contemplating asking for a departmental enquiry against assistant police inspector Sawant and officers responsible in Mahim police station for diluting the case on the basis of which the accused got bail in one case.

Joseph Dias informed that The CSF would pursue the other cases where FIRs were filed in Mahim, Tardeo, Bandra and complaints at Vakola, Santacruz, etc.

” The Christian groups had earlier given the police until this weekend to arrest the culprits, since they released material / advertisements and also put up posters, with the caption “This Time Evil will Win” accompanying the blasphemous picture of Jesus and another one with the Cross of Jesus upside down, with daggers falling above it.

Another advertisement says, “Expect the Unexpected Truth”, the Truth, we believe is Jesus Christ… Not mentioning the category of certification (U/A/UA) in the publicity material is in violation of Rule 38 of Cinematograph (Certification) Rules 1983, non compliance of this rule is also a non-bailable offence.” Joseph Dias added.

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