Mahesh Bhatt hurt at Begum Jaan being 'banned' in Pakistan

Vidya Balan starrer, Begum Jaan is all the rage these days not only because of its breathtaking trailer, but also because of the controversy surrounding its release in Pakistan.

Times of India had earlier reported that the film was ‘banned’ in Pakistan since it portrays the country in a negative light. Producer Mahesh Bhatt had also reportedly written to the Pakistan government to allow the release of the film.

In a recent interview with Mid-day, the Aashiqui director said, “I was told by my distributor that Pakistan, as a policy, does not permit the import of films dealing with the issue of Partition. I requested the key officer of the Pakistan censor board to at least view the film and then take a decision. I was assured they would look into the matter. Sadly, I have not heard from them since. My distributor informs me that his office has been intimated that Begum Jaan won’t be imported into Pakistan.”

He further added, “I did not look at Pakistan just as a market to sell my wares. Yes, when Begum Jaan was not viewed by their Censor Board, I was ridiculed by some of my close associates. That did hurt.”

The director of the movie, Srijit Mukherji, too, gave his two cent about the movie not being allowed to be screened in Pakistan. “It is the rule of someone’s land, which must be respected. Unfortunately, the common thread binding these two nations is the history and Partition is the integral tragedy connecting us,” he said.

“All the hatred can be traced back to it. Understanding and analysing it from a human view would help but it’s a pity they don’t want to. They are touchy and sensitive about this issue,” says Mukherji.