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The Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) has again come under the spotlight, after it ordered to mute four words - 'Gujarat', 'Hindu India', 'Cow' and 'Hindutva view of India' - in a documentary featuring Amartya Sen, on Wednesday.
Speaking on the same, filmmaker Ashoke Pandit told ANI that Censor Board's job is to certify, not censor.
"This is the second case of this kind. In the recent past, the same happened in Madhur Bhandarkar's movie 'Indu Sarkar.' I don't know what the reason is and under which guidelines things are done. I condemn this decision. A filmmaker's freedom of speech should be kept intact. CBFC's work is to certify, not censor."
Further denying any political motive behind it, Pandit said, "The government formed Shyam Benegal Committee, which also has Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra in it. We hope the recommendations of that committee get accepted soon, so that the everyday issues get solved. But I don't banning words in movies is anywhere related to Shyam Benegal Committee's recommendation. It is just a part of it. But there's no political angle to the whole issue."
Another filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri, bringing in a balance to the whole issue, said that instead of slamming Pahlaj Nihalani, the guidelines should be abolished.
"Only abusing Pahlad Nihalani won't solve the issues. On one hand if people relate banning words like 'Hindutva' and 'cow' to BJP, then on the other hand, words in Madhur Bhandarkar's movie 'Indu Sarkar' can also be related to Congress. But things don't work like that. CBFC has got guidelines, which are like extremely old. So I feel, abolish the guidelines," he told ANI.
Adding, "Do you feel mad people are sitting in the censor board? Whichever party be in the government, the Censor Board chief gets the bashing- be in the BJP era or Congress era or Communist era. The CBFC chiefs are easy targets. You get Pahlaj Nihalani as easy target. But do you know Vijay Anand also had to face such problems, Asha Parekh also had to face such problems."
On this note, director Suman Ghosh will not be releasing his documentary 'Argumentative Indian' in Kolkata this weekend, which documents the life of Nobel Laureate.
Veteran actor Raza Murad called upon Sumon and said, in this democratic country, no one can stop him from releasing the movie.
"I don't find anything uncommon in these words. I would like to tell the producers that if they are not allowing to release the movie, then being in a democratic country, you can always go to the court. There you will get justice and the certificate also. No body can stop you," he told ANI.
In the documentary, Sen speaks of social choice theory, development economics, philosophy and the rise of right wing nationalism across the world including India.
It has been made over a span of 15 years from 2002 and is structured as a conversation between Sen and his student economist Kaushik Basu.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)