Aide: With few cuts, Pakistan lifts ban on Oscar-entry film

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ISLAMABAD — Censors are lifting a ban on Pakistan’s Oscar entry, “Joyland,” however some scenes could be lower earlier than the film opens throughout the nation, an aide to the prime minister mentioned Wednesday.

The film, which incorporates a love story between a married man and a transgender girl, is Pakistan’s entry for subsequent 12 months’s Academy Awards and was a prizewinner at this 12 months’s Cannes Movie Competition.

However it has brought on controversy in Muslim-majority Pakistan and state censors final week banned its showings at film theaters, reversing a earlier all-clear for launch.

Transgender persons are thought-about outcasts by many in Pakistan, regardless of some progress with a regulation that protects their rights and a landmark Supreme Courtroom ruling designating them as a 3rd gender.

Salman Sufi, an aide to Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif, informed The Related Press that the choice to raise the ban was made by a committee that the premier had shaped to judge the movie. The board permitted the movie with minor cuts, he mentioned.

“The decision is a simple yet powerful message that the government stands by freedom of speech and safeguards it, and cannot allow mere smear campaigns or disinformation to be used as choking creative freedom,” Sufi mentioned.

He didn’t elaborate on which scenes could be lower.

“Transgender people are as much citizens of Pakistan as anyone else,” he mentioned. “We have launched a hotline for their issues as well from the prime minister’s office and the prime minister is fully committed to safeguarding their rights.”

“Joyland” is scheduled for launch in Pakistani cinemas on Friday.

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