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Pak constitutes panel to decide on lifting Bollywood ban

MUMBAI: Pakistan’s Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has constituted a panel to consider a request by distributors and theatre-owners to resume the import of Bollywood films. Members of the panel led by information minister Maryum Aurangzeb include Irfan Siddiqui, PM’s adviser on national history and literary heritage, commerce secretary and an intelligence officer.

The terms of reference of the four member panel were not mentioned in the notification issued on Monday, but according to the amended law, the PM can allow import of films. Films from India are in the list of items banned but under the import policy order, the ministry issued NOCs (no-objection certificates) thus allowing the import of 2-3 Indian films each month.

Distributors are hoping to get the permission before Shah Rukh Khan’s ‘Raees’ which is scheduled for 25 January release.

Following the Uri attack, the Indian Motion Picture Producers’ Association (IMPPA) imposed a ban on Pakistani artists working in India. Pakistani cinemas on 30 September had announced indefinite suspension of screening of all Bollywood movies.