HC dismisses plea on Aamir Khan`s film `Dhobi Ghat`

Last Updated: Sep 22, 2010, 16:50 PM IST

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court today dismissed a plea challenging the title of upcoming Aamir Khan`s film `Dhobi Ghat` on the ground that it offended the sensitivity of a particular "caste".

A Bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra dismissed a public interest litigation seeking it to frame guidelines to prevent use of name of castes in the title of films.

The petition filed by Hindustan Kanojia Organisation of Dhobis` Chairman Vinod Kumar Kanojia contended that storyline of the film does not revolve around `dhobi ghat` (the place where washermen wash clothes).

"The storyline has nothing to do with `dhobi ghat` and the use of the word `dhobi` hurt sensibility of a particular caste," the advocate appearing for Kanojia pleaded, while seeking court`s direction to producer Khan to change the title of the film.

The counsel claimed that the community has been notified as Scheduled Caste in the Constitution and calling any person by its name was a punishable offence.

The Hindi flick has Bollywood star Aamir Khan in the role of a painter and Prateek Babbar, son of filmstar-turned- politician Raj Babbar as a laundry boy.

Rejecting the petitioner`s contention, the court said that `Dhobi Ghat` is a geographical description of a place and is not offensive.

Holding that the PIL is "an abuse of process of law", the court also imposed a cost of Rs 25,000 on the petitioner and asked him to deposit the amount in Blind`s Relief Association.

The film directed by Aamir Khan`s wife Kiran Rao has got rave reviews following its screening at an International Film festival recently. Rao`s directorial feat is likely to
released in India in December.

PTI