Pakistan censor board banned Agent Vinod
There was no official word from the board but sources told PTI that the film, which centres round the exploits of an Indian spy played by Saif Ali Khan, was banned as it contained references to the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) "that could hurt the sentiments of people in Pakistan". Leading newspapers had carried advertisements over the past few days regarding the release of "Agent Vinod" in cinemas across Pakistan on March 23. However, cineplexes in cities like Karachi, Lahore and Rawalpindi stopped sales of tickets for the film today after learning that it had not been cleared by censors.
The statement issued by IMGC Global quoted the firm`s chairman, Amjad Rashid, as saying that "Agent Vinod" had been banned "due to the contents of the movie". Rashid said he had told film producers to "restrict…involving characters of countries and religions". "These factors cannot be compromised at any cost," Rashid said. Entertainment should facilitate the peace process between India and Pakistan and not disturb it, he said.
"Now that India and Pakistan are extending cooperation on the business front, especially after the exchange of visits of both the Ministers of Commerce, this can jeopardise the business progress and environment," Rashid said. Rashid further suggested that films "should not hurt either the religious or national sentiments of Pakistanis" or "decelerate the Indo-Pakistan peace-building process". IMGC Global, which has an annual turnover of about 200 million dollars, is Pakistan`s largest importer of Indian films. The firm imported 30 Indian films in 2010 and 15 more last year.