The war of words between Udta Punjab producer Anurag Kashyap and Censor Board chief Pahlaj Nihalani has escalated further today following the board issuing an 'A' certificate to the film. Speaking to news channels, Nihalani said that Kashyap's statements about being asked to remove the word 'Punjab' from the title, was misleading.
He said Kashyap was politicising the issue. According to Times Now, Nihalani stated that Kashyap had taken money to defame the state of Punjab, which goes to polls next month. He told India Today that the controversy around the cuts was a publicity stunt by the makers and that Kashyap was politically affiliated to the Aam Aadmi Party.
Earlier, he had said that Kashyap was behaving like a kid who wasn't given a toy.
The AAP, which has ventured into Punjab politics and is fighting the 2017 Assembly elections, has made the drug menace in Punjab a major poll plank.
Meanwhile, the makers of Udta Punjab have moved court, seeking a copy of the Censor Board order imposing cuts in the film.
Kashyap, one of the producers of Udta Punjab, on 7 June had criticised the government, saying it was wrong to politically colour his fight with the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) over censorship issue.
"FYI, I have fought the UPA more on censorship issues than the NDA. But you know what, there was no Nihalani then," the director-producer tweeted.
The Gangs of Wasseypur director slammed the alleged "paid" trolls projecting him as an agent of Congress and AAP.
"And it's pathetic that the party-supported and paid-trolls are trying to make me look like an agent of Congress or AAP," he tweeted.
Kashyap said he had been working closely with the Minister of State for Information & Broadcasting Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore before the controversy.
"I have been working closely with this ministry and the MOS Mr Rathore on the censorship issues. And I have all our texts and messages saved so if the govt is trying to make there (sic) incompetence look good then they've picked a wrong person & stop taking out list of cuts made for television of my adult films to show as censored portions of my film to prove a non-existing point."
Upset with the Censor Board committee's recommendations, Kashyap had tweeted yesterday, "I always wondered what it felt like to live in North Korea. Ab to plane pakadney ki bhi zaroorat nahin."
To which Rathore had said, "Do you think you are living in North Korea? We can have a vote here, it is a democracy."
The Udta Punjab storm started after the board purportedly raised certain objections regarding references to Punjab and asked the makers to make 89 cuts.
With inputs from PTI