27 Jan, 2022

It's been a bumpy ride for Abu Aleeha's film Javed Iqbal: The Untold Story of a Serial Killer. The Ayesha Omar and Yasir Hussain-starrer, which is set for its countrywide premiere tomorrow (January 28) after several months of postponement, has had its release in Punjab halted by the Punjab government, according to the director.

The film is based on the investigation into Javed Iqbal, the serial killer who killed 100 young boys in Lahore and sent evidence of his crimes to the authorities and media in 1999. The film has been directed by Abu Aleeha who has written the screenplay of the film as well. It's been produced by Javed Ahmed Kakepoto.

Several social media platforms reported about Javed Iqbal's release being halted by the Punjab government, despite having clearance from all censor boards. The report was later confirmed by Abu Aleeha on Twitter. "The latest news is that [Chief Minister] Sardar Usman Buzdar's government has stopped the showing of Javed Iqbal. This unwarranted action comes after the censor board approved the film, which is why we will be [taking the matter] to the high court," he said.

Javed Iqbal was originally supposed to be released in October, but the premiere was pushed to December 24 because it was still being cleared by the censor boards. December proved to be unlucky as well — the film's release experienced yet another delay due to a rise in Covid-19 cases, according to Omar. The release date was rescheduled to January 28.

The film had its Karachi premiere at Nueplex CInema on January 25, attended by the cast and crew as well as other members of the entertainment fraternity.


NYS Jan 27, 2022 12:24pm
There is no need to constraints menence while the film is approved by censor board and story revolves around Punjab serial killer
Nads Jan 27, 2022 01:02pm
This film should not be released the subject matter is not suitable for general public viewing .what were they thinking ! It’s Pakistan full of illiterate people what if someone gets ideas ? Really think ..who is the audience before making these movies.. it should be rated age 55!
funnyman Jan 27, 2022 01:02pm
Good Job Government of Punjab, it is ridiculous that these wannabe progressives are so desperate for spotlight that they would glorify a monster that murdered, chopped into pieces and dissolved the corpses in acid of over 100 children. It is a proven fact that serial killers like Javed crave attention. He literally turned himself in so that photos be taken of him and his crimes. And now that the authorities have punished him and erased his existence thereby refusing him the attention he craved, these so called "liberals" want to dig the whole horror up and profit from the suffering of Javed's victims. Shame on all of them and thier disgusting for sale "morals". You can expect these same trashcans to make movies on Zainab and Noor Mukhdoom in the excuse of "awareness" so that they can profit of the suffering of these victims as well.
Hasan Malik Jan 27, 2022 01:05pm
I have seen the trailer and it is disgusting. Darkening the faces of Punjab police officers and other actors to show the people of Punjab is utter racism. Also they have shown everyone to speak Urdu in an accent to mock them. Punjab government must ban such kind of movies that are like a mockery of one region and nothing else.
Ali Sabir Jan 27, 2022 01:23pm
... Once a government is committed to the principle of silencing the voice of opposition, it has only one way to go, and that is down the path of increasingly repressive measures, until it becomes a source of terror to all its citizens and creates a country where everyone lives in fear.
Achakzai Jan 27, 2022 01:27pm
pathetic film and ideas
Sheharyar Javaid Jan 27, 2022 02:32pm
This is the reason Pakistan is unable to produce quality contrnt. Whenever someone tries to go in a separate direction from the norm of romantic topis they are made to abandon the project. But still our PM boosts that we have the most free and independent media. Such stories raise awareness not create problem. And it too is being handled in the same way as anyother issue ban it before even trying to understand it.
M. Saeed Jan 27, 2022 02:49pm
Good to stop the avenue of a huge crime-glorification.
Faisal Jan 27, 2022 02:49pm
Parental guidance imposed on an entire country. Literal nanny state
DJ Ghafoora Jan 27, 2022 03:17pm
The only sensible decision made by this government and the director finds a fault with it. Shows how sick and twisted people working on this movie must be, callously ignoring the fact that many of the parents who had lost their children to that monster might still be alive. Why subject them to further emotional torture in the name of entertainment? Lucky they didn't get sued for it yet!
Tenjee Jan 27, 2022 03:47pm
The showbiz industry does not represent the true Pakistan in their lifestyles and attitudes.
ST Jan 27, 2022 04:23pm
Very good decision . We don't need such movies with such a graphic content.
Chrís Dăn Jan 27, 2022 06:24pm
A movie with a toxic issue.
sdan Jan 27, 2022 08:08pm
@Nads people don't commit crime because they are illiterate. every person has a moral compass, irrespective to how much education they have. what an ignorant comment. clearly shows literacy isn't proportional to logic.
Citizen Jan 27, 2022 10:13pm
We support Punjab Government in this censorship
TenJee Jan 28, 2022 05:21pm
@Faisal 'artists' corrupt, they have a mentality that thrives on shocking, breaking taboos, pushing boundaries of decency, and garnering the notoriety that comes with this. Society absolutely needs protecting from such people. There is a reason we use nannys to look after and nurture impressionable children - we also need social, ethical, moral boundaries as adults, and if you choose to label that as being a 'Nanny State' then let you children go about wild and care free and unbound and see what that gets them.
Faisal Jan 28, 2022 11:45pm
@TenJeeWe are not children. We do not need nannies. We are -- or ought to be -- free thinking citizens. What we do need state protection for is the preservation of our right to life, security, education etc. Not this. Few of us have seen this film yet, but we are throwing around the word "glorification." Is talking about something automatically to glorify it? Better ban the nine o' clock news then. It gets pretty violent. This man existed. The dark side of the human psyche exists. Making a film/book/art/whatever on it -- if done well, and I'm not saying this one is or isn't -- allows us to explore the human condition, which is both good and terrible. Artists hold a mirror up to society so we can DO BETTER. Not put our heads in the sand and call it "morality." This knee jerk reaction is intellectually immature, childish and whiny -- maybe you do need a nanny after all to prevent you from, as you say, running wild and unbound and carefree.
RC Jan 29, 2022 02:37am
@Nads so you can never make a crime biopic on anyone ever? Get out of your stone age mentality.
RC Jan 29, 2022 02:39am
@funnyman its called a crime biopic, its showing the reality of people who are in middle of us, you think he was the only one? Its also a form of awareness, please think logically and not emotionally