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Former Censor Chief Accuses Current CBFC Chief Of Favoritism, To Take the CBFC To Court

Pahlaj Nihalani who once  not so long ago helmed the Central Board Of Film Certification(CBFC) is in no mood to back  off .

His on-release production Rangeela Raja featuring Govinda in a  double role has  been  ordered multiple cuts.And Nihalani  isn’t taking it.

Blasting the  current censor chief Prasoon Joshi he  says, “This  is  nothing but  personal vendetta. When I  was  the  chairperson(at the CBFC) I left a  lot of people angry and upset with me. Now when my film has been submitted for censoring, they are taking out their frustrations  on me. But I  won’t go down without a fight.”

Nihalani who claims to have followed  all the  guidelines  as the censor chief, accuses Joshi of bending rules to please friends.  “Everybody knows  about Prasoon   Joshi’s enduring friendship with Aamir Khan. No one is surprised  that Thugs OfHindostan(starring Aamir Khan) was  given an all-clear censor certification out of turn,  while my film Rangeela Raja which  was submitted  well in time  60 days ahead  of  release , has been slapped with  multiple cuts which I am not taking. No sir!”

Nihalani says a new  impromptu rule has been added to the censor guidelines to please  influential  producers and give them undue priority  for censoring.  “A producer can now  submit an affidavit where he takes an undertaking  that he needs a censor certificate  in a hurry , breaking the 60-day rule.”

Nihalani says this new additional rule is bogus. “How can the  CBFC follow up whether a film actually releases  on the day given on the affidavit? This  is  done only to  accommodate  handpicked producers whereas I am being harassed because I’ve a history with the  CBFC.”
Nihalani  says the  cuts ordered  in his film are absurd. “There is no vulgarity no double meaning  dialogues. Still I’ve been asked to delete a massive number of  dialogues and scenes. In one sequence my heroine asks my hero what he’d like as  gurudakshina. He says Eklavya cut his thumb and gave it to his guru  , to which she tells the hero he can cut her lips. There is no kiss. Only a  suggestion of a kiss. Still I’ve been asked  to cut out this harmless playful scene.Why? Movies like AnuragKashyap’s Manmarziyan are  filled with  kissing and  lovemaking  scenes and yet passed with a ‘UA.”

Nihalani says his film is  being made a scapegoat by the CBFC and he is all set for a legal battle. “Prasoon Joshi  is  breaking guidelines  to  please  his friends. But he can’t bully me  into cutting harmless scenes just because I  was once in his chair and favouring no one. I am going to court to  fight this  out. I will see Mr Joshi in court.”

I tried to get in touch with Prasoon Joshi  . But he  chose  not to reply.

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