New Delhi :
Pakistan is trying to widen its arms for Nandita Das’s Nawazuddin Siddiqui-starrer Manto to be released in the country. Fawad Chaudhry, minister of information and broadcasting in Pakistan, on Sunday assured to help the filmmaker to lift a ban on Manto from his country. The minister shared the news on his social media account, suggesting that he is trying to influence the film importers to bring this movie to Pakistan in an attempt to show to the viewers ‘A less commercial’.
Earlier, Nandita had shared her disappointment for not releasing Manto in Pakistan on her twitter handle. “Disappointed that Manto will not be seen in theatres in Pakistan. I was keen as he belongs to both countries equally,” tweeted the director.
Nandita also extended her gratitude to all the activists, writers, artists, and concerned citizens in Pakistan who were responsible for appealing the PM for the film release. She wrote, “I am grateful to the activists, writers, artists, and concerned citizens in Pakistan, who have spontaneously come together and signed an open letter to their PM appealing...”
Responding to the tweet, Fawad wrote, “I am trying to pursue importers to bring this movie to Pak, I hope someone will definitely take risk of showing A less commercial film to the viewers.”
I am trying to pursue importers to bring this movie to Pak, I hope someone will definitely take risk of showing A less commercial film to the viewers https://t.co/ZkNyJOyfTi— Ch Fawad Hussain (@fawadchaudhry) December 15, 2018
Earlier in October, the Pakistan Film Producers Association (PFPA) demanded a complete ban on the release of Indian films in the country. Chaudhry Ejaz Kamran, a senior official in the PFPA, had said when Pakistani films are not screened in India, why should they screen Indian films in the country.
A few months back, Nandita had stated that Manto is not just a film, it is more of a response to “what is happening to us”.
"People who are at the crossroads, people who have conviction but grappling with thoughts about how much to speak up and how much not to speak, must see Manto," said Das, who garnered critical acclaim for her roles in Fire, Earth and Bawander among others.
Nawazuddin Siddiqui, who plays the titular character, said he could relate with the thoughts of the author and playwright.
"I felt Manto's thought was my thought. His thought was ahead of his time," he said.