After the trailer of his upcoming movie Neelam was denied certification by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC), Indian movie Director Venkatesh Kumar has approached the Indian Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT), The Hindu newspaper reported.
“The trailer was refused certification since there are references to Tamil Eelam and the LTTE, which I was told violate guidelines. I have presented a defence to the appellate tribunal contesting the refusal of certification,” he said.
The guidelines in question state that the security of the State must not be jeopardised and that friendly relations with foreign states must not be strained.
Kumar said while the trailer contains visuals of LTTE leader Prabhakaran, the story or the movie does not glorify them. “The film traces the decades of incidents which led to the civil war in Sri Lanka. My film is a documentation of history and merely depicts facts with regard to the genocide which happened there,” the director told the tribunal.
The shooting for the film, which has been long in the making, initially began in 2012. “We had to stop filming in 2013 after we received threats for the issues that our movie was addressing. The producers at that time refused to support us and we began to re-shoot the film in 2016,” he said.
Stating that he was hopeful of a positive response from the tribunal, Kumar said that he was ready to mute some scenes or dialogues if necessary, but it was unfair to deny certification of the content.