As seems to happen too frequently, Pahlaj Nihalani has once again gotten confused and imagined that the CBFC is his personal side hobby to run however seems fun at the time. I thought it couldn’t get worse than the time he tried to ban Lipstick Under My Burkha because it was “too lady-oriented” (thank god that that movie is being released, and their poster is a vivid fuck-you to Nihalani and the CBFC).
Yesterday, we were talking about the CBFC demanding that the word ‘intercourse’ be deleted from the mini-trailer of Imtiaz Ali’s new film, Jab Harry Met Sejal. Now, Nihalini has thrown some kind of open challenge at the makers of the film or the country at large, and said that he will allow the word ‘intercourse’ if 1 lakh people vote for the word to stay. He said to Mirror Now, “If you take the voting from the public, I definitely promise you that I’ll clear this word from the picture as well as the promo. You should take the voting from the public… 1 lac.”
— Mirror Now (@MirrorNow) June 23, 2017
Okay, a couple of things. First of all, nice shirt.
More importantly, it doesn’t work that way. At all. This is your job, you don’t get to throw open opinion polls and random challenges for cuts depending on what mood you’re in, and trying to do that shows just how lightly you take your job and the people connected to it.
But if this is some kind of precedent that’s being set for how the CBFC will work in the future, it’s really nothing but bad news. There’s no doubt that a Shah Rukh Khan and Anushka Sharma starrer will get all the votes it needs to beat any censor’s challenge, but the same can’t be said of smaller films with lesser known actors. A move like this not only makes a joke of film certification and the CBFC, but it also ensures that censorship will applied selectively to smaller films while big budget movies can do whatever they want.