The Supreme Court on Friday refused to lift a ban on "PM Narendra Modi", the biopic on the life of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi declined to interfere with the Election Commission's recommendation to release the movie after the 2019 Lok Sabha election.
The seven-phase general election ends on May 19; results will be out on May 23.
"What survives in this now?" said the bench also comprising Justices Deepak Gupta and Sanjiv Khanna.
"The issue is whether the movie can be exhibited at this time. The Election Commission has taken a decision. We are not inclined to entertain this," the bench added.
The court's ruling comes after the Election Commission, which had originally banned the film on April 10, was asked to submit its report on the film to the court.
In its first order, the poll body claimed the movie had the "potential to disturb the level playing field during the elections should not be displayed in the electronic media."
The order was challenged by the film's producers who took it to the top court.
The movie, which stars Vivek Oberoi, has run into several challenges in the middle of the Lok Sabha election, including a petition argued by senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, who pointed out that four BJP office-bearers were among the movie's producers.
The biopic on PM Modi isn't the only one to have run afoul of the poll body's code of conduct that is in force till the end of the election.
"Baghini", a film by director Nehal Dutta on West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, has run into similar obstacles. On April 24, the Election Commission ordered the removal of the film's trailer from at least three websites after complaints by the BJP's state wing.
Ms Banerjee responded to reports that the film was indeed a biopic on her with a tweet threatening lawsuits against the spreading of lies.
Earlier, the poll body also ordered the taking down of a web series - "Modi - Journey of a Common Man" - based on the Prime Minister.