Film certification in the country is set to go through "some very radical changes" which will be announced by the Centre soon, according to Information and Broadcasting Minister Arun Jaitley, reported the Times of India. He said the censor board needs to be more liberal with its rules and regulations.

"There is a well documented report by Shyam Benegal, the first part of which has come to me which is under consideration. Over the next few days, we are going to announce some very radical changes in that," the Union minister said.

Jaitley's words come in the middle of the controversy raked up by the censor board's refusal to clear Bollywood film Udta Punjab. The board has suggested at least 89 cuts in the film, including removal of any scene or dialogue from the film that refers to Punjab, except for the title. The filmmakers have appealed in the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal. The producers – Balaji Telefilms and Phantom Films – have also moved the Bombay High Court against the certification panel's ruling.

Reacting to the controversy, Congress chief ministerial candidate Captain Amarinder Singh told the Economic Times that his party plans to arrange a screening of the uncut version of the film in Majitha, known for drug trafficking. In an interview, he accused the Bharatiya Janata Party and ruling Shiromani Akali Dal of trying to stop the film from releasing, and in the process stifling free speech. He said he has approached the producers of the film asking for an uncensored copy of the film that can be showed on June 17, the official date of release.

About the film, Jaitley said, "I won't say it is overboard. I don't know this case because I have not seen this film in question." He agreed that the censor board might be a "little conservative" in its approach. However, referring to the FCAT, he said anyone who is not satisfied with the board's decision, can go appeal to the tribunal. According to the senior minister, almost 99% of the films get cleared at the tribunal level.

The ruling SAD government on Thursday decided to break its silence on the row as Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal hit back at the Opposition for "spreading canards" that the government is trying to ban the movie for political ends. He pointed out that the Abhishek Chaubey film describes Punjabis as "Kanjar" and the state as "banjar". He said the state government has nothing to do with the ongoing controversy which he insisted was a matter between the producers and the certification panel, reported The Indian Express.

“For us, it is one of the countless such films produced for commercial reasons. Whether to allow its release or not is an issue between the producers and the CBFC. The government has nothing to do with it. It is for the censors to see whether the film meets or violates the fundamental principles of balance between freedom of expression on the one hand and deliberately or inadvertently blackening the face of a state, a community or a faith on the other,” the 53-year-old politician said. The film is question deals with substance abuse and it stars Shahid Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor and Alia Bhatt, among others.