‘DAM 999’ producer and director Mr. Sohan Roy has moved the Supreme Court on Wednesday challenging the Tamil Nadu’s Government‘s decision to ban his film from being screened in the State. Mr. Sohan Roy has questioned the wisdom of the government to ban his film to achieve” narrow political objectives” He said the order had no constitutional, much less legal, basis.
He said the State suspended the screening of the Hollywood movie without him or affording him an opportunity for clarification. The “arbitrary, unilateral and unjustified act” violated his fundamental right to freedom guaranteed under Article 19(1) (a). Nowhere did the film say it was about the Mullaiperiyar dam. Even an indirect mention of a water sharing contract between two neighboring States was deleted as per the request of the Censor Board.
“The fundamental right to freedom can be reasonably restricted only for the purpose mentioned in Article 19(2). The restriction must be justified on the anvil of necessity and not the quicksand of convenience of political expediency”. Explaining the contents of the film, Mr. Roy said it “spreads the message about the consequences of dam disasters around the world.”
He further said” navarasa or nine human emotions are shown by nine characters. Just as a dam holds water, the nine characters hold back their emotion, which eventually breaks out during a disaster drawing the audience to a gripping climax. In short the movie revolves round a dam, the number 9, navrasas, navagrahas, 9 characters with 9 assorted tunes, 9 forms of lost love and the cultural heritage of India. The number 9 has an important role in the movie and hence the name DAM 999.”