`Lamhaa` banned in Middle East, says Bunty Walia
New Delhi: After the ‘Lamhaa’ premiere was cancelled in Kashmir, the film`s release has been banned in Middle East, says producer Bunty Walia, who is extremely upset with the decision.
"`Lamhaa` has been banned in the Middle East. According to the censors there, it is a highly objectionable and controversial subject. The Indian government passed it, I don`t know why they have refused to let is screen in their countries," Walia told reporters on the phone from Mumbai.
The film, based on violence and terrorism in the Kashmir valley, was due for release in Middle East Thursday. But now the producer isn`t too sure about it even though the film`s distributor PVR Pictures is in talks with the censors there.
"There are no scenes that they want me to remove from the film. They have outrightly refused to screen `Lamhaa`," said Walia.
The film was to be premiered in Kashmir, but was cancelled because the producer didn`t want to be "insensitive" to the sentiments of the people living there.
Produced by GS Entertainment and directed by Rahul Dholakia, the movie releases Friday.
Featuring Sanjay Dutt, Bipasha Basu, Kunal Kapoor and Anupam Kher, ‘Lamhaa’ questions whether wisdom would prevail in the Valley so that the Kashmiris are not crucified in the name of politics.
Walia, who has produced films like ‘Maine Dil Tujhko Diya’, ‘Hello Darling’, and ‘Pyaar Kiya To Darna Kya’, says the ban has upset him.
"This news has really dampened my spirits. The Middle East is a huge market for Bollywood movies these days and we could suffer a huge setback because of this ban. There is definitely a lot of money at stake that could have been recovered from that region, but more than that I am sad that the audience there can`t see a film like `Lamhaa`," he said.
According to the producer, the film will be on 750 screens across India.