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Updated January 30th, 2024 at 00:39 IST

It's controversial/ Not Merely Because You See It Onscreen: Kerala HC On Plea Seeking Ban On Smoking Scenes In Movies

A plea has been filed by NGO Kerala Voluntary Health Services stating that such depiction is contrary to the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act, 2003.

Guntur Kaaram
Guntur Kaaram | Image:Instagram
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Of late actors smoking onscreen has come under a lot of scrutiny. Last year, the makers of Vijay starrer Leo had to face heat over a poster of the film which depicted the Tamil star smoking. After backlash, the poster was edited. Now, the Kerala High Court, while presiding over a case related to against display of tobacco smoking scenes in films and tele-serials, shared its views on the matter.

Smoking is induced more from peer pressure, says Court

A plea has been filed by NGO Kerala Voluntary Health Services stating that such depiction is contrary to the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of Advertisement and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production, Supply and Distribution) Act, 2003.

In the case, presiding judge Justice Devan Ramachandran said smoking is induced more from peer pressure. Do you really think people start smoking by seeing it on the screen. It is when your friends start smoking...Smoking is injurious to health, drinking is injurious to health, you cannot expect the whole screen to be shown like this. What about the International movies or movies in other parts."

HC judge sides with the petitioner

While admitting the plea, Justice Ramachandran assured the petitioner that the Court is completely in favour of the objective sought to be achieve. However, he said "(smoking) is not merely because you see it on screen, it is more for peer pressure, availability and acceptance."

Mahesh Babu smoked herbal cigarette in Guntur Kaaram | Image: Haarika & Hassine Creations/X

"I am not against you, I agree, I am completely with you...if any step is worthwhile to take to keep away children from smoking and drinking, especially drugs," the judge added. The matter has been further listed for hearing on February 7.

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Published January 29th, 2024 at 23:17 IST

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