It’s become commonplace to find Bollywood movies on the receiving end of legal notices
Akshay Kumar, Jacqueline Fernandez, and Nushrratt Bharuccha starrer Ram Setu has landed itself in legal trouble. The team recently received legal notices for allegedly ‘distorting’ facts in the film. BJP leader and former Rajya Sabha MP, Subramanian Swamy, revealed that he’d sent notices to Kumar and eight others to educate them about ‘intellectual property rights.’
The politician tweeted, “Mumbai cinema [or is it sin-e-ma] wallas have a bad habit of falsifying and misappropriation. Hence to teach them Intellectual Property Rights, I have through Satya Sabharwal Adv issued Legal Notice to Cine Actor Akshay Kumar(Bhatia) and 8 others for distorting Ram Setu saga.”
Interestingly, this is not the first Bollywood film to have landed in legal trouble before its release. Check out our list of Hindi films that were served with legal notices.
The Sanjay Leela directorial attracted several court cases. In 2018, several right-wing groups filed FIRs against the film for misrepresenting history. Many also claimed that the film tarnished the reputations of their king and queen, and demanded a change in the film’s title as well. The film was banned in Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, and Haryana.
The controversy surrounding the release of Abhishek Chaubey’s Udta Punjab, was one of the longest in Bollywood’s history. Several protests across northern India were held, urging a ban on the film’s release. A couple of petitions were also filed in the Punjab and Haryana High Court. People alleged that the Shahid Kapoor starrer film portrayed Punjab negatively. Many also felt that the film was promoting drug abuse and hence should not be released.
Ranbir Kapoor, Anushka Sharma, and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan starrer film faced a lot of trouble before its release. The terrorist attack in Jammu and Kashmir took place in 2016, and people were agitated that Pakistani actor Fawad Khan was a part of the film. Cinema Owners Exhibitors Association of India decided to prohibit the release of films starring Pakistani actors. The MNS reportedly pushed for theatre owners across the country to not screen the film as well.
The film’s title sparked debate among those who believed that the name exuded an incorrect portrayal of the Indian legal system. It was said to be a “deliberate attempt” to insult the system. Advocate Ajaykumar Waghmare filed a case in the Bombay High Court to have it removed. A three-member committee was also appointed by The Bombay High Court to investigate the film’s content. Bata India, Kochhar & Co issued a legal notice to the filmmakers and filed an INR 30 million lawsuit against them for making fun of their brand in the trailer.
The film which was initially titled Loveratri landed in legal trouble for its title. Sanatan Foundation moved to the Gujarat High Court seeking a ban, claiming that its title and content hurt the sentiments of Hindus. The foundation also claimed that some dialogues shown in the trailer were offensive. “If this movie is allowed to be viewed in cinemas in Gujarat, it will leave a very bad impact on youngsters and the public at large,” the PIL claimed.
John Abraham’s film Satyameva Jayate also attracted legal trouble. Post the release of its trailer, a BJP leader went on to file a complaint against the makers of the film. He alleged that the trailer hurt the sentiments of the Shia community. The political figure further enthused that the trailer showed the Muharram procession in a bad way, and requested the Central Board of Film Certification to delete the scene.
The team of Manmarziyaan was served a legal notice by the Jammu & Kashmir Tourism Board. The team had reportedly shot in a few areas where vehicles were banned from entering, by the Sonamarg Development Authority, on the orders of the J&K high court. The tourism board demanded a probe into how the team managed to access and shoot in the otherwise (banned) areas.
(Featured Image Credits: Sanjay Leela Bhansali Production)