The Supreme Court sought well-known film director Mahesh Bhatt's view on a government lawsuit for scrapping a Delhi High Court (DHC) verdict, which permitted scenes of cigarette smoking in movies for the sake of art on Thursday.
A bench of Chief Justice KG Balakrishnan and Justice P Sathasivam wanted Bhatt's reaction on the central administration's lawsuit and sent him a notice for it.
Previously on a suit by Bhatt, DHC had given green signal to on-screen smoking and trashed a government order, which banished smoking scenes in movies together with smoking in public areas.
The high court had supported on-screen smoking on the ground that it was branch of artistic expression and casting out it would amount to infringement of the fundamental rights of speech and expression.
The government, in line, disputed the high court ruling in February, arguing that permitting on-screen smoking would "glamorise" it and make kids fall prey to the health risk.
The ban on smoking scenes was enforced by the government in 2006.
Banishing on-screen smoking was the idea of former health minister Anbumani Ramadoss.
The health ministry in its appeal has mentioned several grounds to defy the high court decision.