Pahlaj Nihalani, the Chairperson of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) is angry about the hate being spewed against him for the denial of a censor certificate to Prakash Jha’s Lipstick Under My Burkha. Various celebrities including Farhan Akhtar and Kabir Khan had slammed Pahlaj and his board member for denying a certificate to a film on the grounds of being “lady oriented.”
But looks like this has not gone down to well with the CBFC chief. In an explosive chat, Pahlaj lashes out at Farhan and Kabir for tweeting against him and alleges that they are fighting with him even without knowing anything about the whole scenario.
While slamming the duo, Pahlaj reveals that he felt hurt by Farhan and Kabir’s remarks coz at one point of time he had gone out of his way for certifying their film, but they are still criticising him. As Pahlaj revealed, “I’ve gone out of my way to get Farhan Akhtar’s Rock On 2 and Kabir Khan’s Bajrangi Bhaijaan out of censorial blockades. On what grounds are Farhan and Kabir tweeting and talking against me?
They are fighting a cause they’ve no idea of. Please do not attack the CBFC and me just because it is considered trendy to do so.”
He even claims that Farhan and Kabir are opposing the board’s decision coz it is fashionable to support any film that talks about women’s empowerment. As he added, “Have Sudhir Mishra, Farhan Akhtar and Kabir Khan seen Lipstick Under My Burkha? How can they jump into the controversy just because it is fashionable to support any film that talks about women’s empowerment? How genuine is this film’s feminism?
They attack me calling me a maker of B grade films and listing vulgar songs that I’ve used in my films. But those songs are not even in my film. As for making B grade films why only B grade? I may have made C grade and Z grade films too. That doesn’t give me the right to certify objectionable content in my capacity as the chairperson of the CBFC. I may have made films that I might have cut if they came to me during my tenure as CBFC chief.”
Talking about the scenario surrounding Prakash Jha‘s Lipstick Under My Burkha, Pahlaj Nihalani mentioned, “First of all, we didn’t ban the film Lipstick Under My Burkha. The Examining Committee saw the film and refused to certify it. Now, the Revising Committee has also refused to certify the film.
The film’s producer, Prakash Jha, says he will go to the Tribunal of the censor board. He knows the procedure. He has been through it with many of his films, including his last Jai Gangaajal. So what’s the fuss about.”
The censor chief is livid about the way the film’s team and its supporters have gone to town over the censor refusal. “Why are they pinning the blame for the Examining Committee and Revising Committee’s refusal on me? There are two bodies of well-informed jury members in the two committees.
They’ve all found the content of Lipstick Under My Burkha to be extremely objectionable. There are constant sexual innuendos and suggestions of the sex act. The language is lurid and graphic,” questions Pahlaj.
Nihalani also says a lot of myths are being created in the media to malign him. As he added, “One news channel thinks shouting, encouraging noise pollution and lashing out at me will raise their TRPs. God bless them. But they need to do their homework. They were shouting about how the CBFC has objections to the word Burkha in the title Lipstick Under My Burkha. This is completely wrong. We never expressed any reservations about the title. We’ve no objections to women wearing lipstick under a burkha. But the film shows these women doing unmentionable things. If some sections think this is a progressive behaviour, gender equality and women’s empowerment then I pity the generations to come,” he said.
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