CBFC mass exodus: 13 members follow Samson; say action not related to ‘MSG’

NEW DELHI: Even as the government accepted Leela Samson’s resignation as chairperson of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) following the controversy over the film ‘Messenger of God’ (MSG), made by and starring Dera Saccha Sauda head Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, 13 other members have put in their papers.


The film has already been cleared by the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT).


In a letter, the members – M K Raina, Arundhati Nag, Ira Bhaskar, Lora Prabhu, Pankaj Sharma, Rajeev Masand, Anjum Rajabali, Nikhil Alva, Mamang Dai, Sekharbabu Kancherla, Shaji N Karun, Shubhra Gupta and TG Thyagarajan - have said that since the time that they first joined the Board, they had been seeking critical changes, which were imperative if the functioning of the CBFC has to be reformed.  


The term of most of these members and Samson had ended in May, but they had been given extensions to continue. While some members said they had tendered their resignations around six months earlier, they were unanimous while talking to that the resignations had no connection with the film ‘Messenger of God’.


The members’ letter said, "In spite of sending numerous recommendations and appeals, and having several meetings with the secretaries and senior officials of the ministry, and even one with an earlier Minister, not a single positive step has been taken by the Ministry.”


The CBFC members claimed that the “Advisory Panel continues to be filled up with people of questionable credentials appointed directly by the Ministry, without taking the Board's recommendations into account.” No funds have been released for conducting orientation workshops for the panel members, they said, adding that officers from other departments, who have no understanding or experience in cinema are appointed as officials.


They also claimed that there are several positions in the regional offices that do not have regular appointments.


“There has been no board meeting for the last one year for us to discuss developments and make recommendations, as we were told that there are no funds to organize it. It seems that the CBFC Board is not required at all,” the letter said.


“It is our firm position that given the cavalier and dismissive manner in which the CBFC is treated by government, it is impossible to perform this duty with even a modicum of efficacy or autonomy. We also object to the way in which the Chairperson has been treated by the Ministry, which we feel has been humiliating for us all,” the letter said.


Asked about the clearance by FCAT, Samson said, “Yes, it is a mockery of CBFC. My resignation is final. I have informed the Information and Broadcasting Ministry secretary Bimal Julka.”


While she did not specifically refer to the reported clearance to the film, Samson alleged “interference, coercion and corruption of panel members and officers of the organisation who are appointed by the ministry.”            


Refuting these allegations, the government had yesterday said that it has always maintained a distance from the entire process of film certification.


Latest Reads
Ae Dil Hai Mushkil: Youthful fun in parts

MUMBAI: 'Ae Dil Hai Mushkil' deals in romance and music, something that Karan Johar is good at. What is different here is that this film is not about the usual pursuit of love till the families object, then agree and all ends on a happy note.  The film is also not about sacrifices made in the...

Movies Hindi
Ajay Kapoor's experience will benefit our film venture: Wadhawan Group

The Rajesh Wadhawan Group, with interest in finance, real estate, hospitality, and sports, is now entering Bollywood with their foray into film production. The Kapil Wadhawan and Dheeraj Wadhawan-led group's new venture will take shape under the able leadership of T- series’ former director Ajay...

Movies Hindi
Mobile promotions Fox 'Ae Dil...' on UCWeb

Promotion on the go for 'Ae Dil..." Alibaba Mobile Business Group’s UCWeb India charted a new success story through its tie-up with Fox Star Studios, India, Dharma Productions and Sony Music India to promote the highly anticipated Diwali release, Ae Dil Hai Mushkil.

Movies Hindi
Box Office: A disastrous week for film exhibitors

It has been another disastrous week at the cinema halls and the wait is now on for Diwali week releases. All the releases failed to find audiences and faced the no-audience-no-show situation. The films released a week earlier were faced with the similar fate as well.

Movies Hindi
Govt says 'no mushkil' to 'Ae Dil' even as Pak industry supports Indian content ban

NEW DELHI: Although Indian is almost completely banned in Pakistan now courtesy PEMRA, in India, it became a Catch-22: give in or give up. But, ultimately Karan Johar managed to get an assurance that ‘Ae Dil hai Mushkil’ would be released as scheduled on 28 October, after the Maharashtra chief...

Movies Hindi
Sony Pictures signs three-film deal with international producers

MUMBAI: Sony Pictures International Productions (SPIP) has inked a deal with Mexico and Los Angeles-based producers Eduardo Cisneros and Jason Shuman. With this multi-picture development, the producers will write and produce three new feature films with the studio.

Movies Hollywood
31st October: Genuine effort wasted

Rather late in the day, 31stOctober is a film about the Sikh genocide of 1984 in Delhi in the aftermath of assassination of the then prime minister of India Indira Gandhi. She was killed by her security guards, who happened to be Sikh. That assassination, again, is attributed to the anger of the...

Movies Hindi
TV premiere of Daniel Craig's 'Spectre' on 23 October

Movies Now is all geared up to air the television premiere of the Daniel Craig starrer James Bond movie Spectre. With Diwali round the corner, the movie will hit the TV screens on 23 October at 1 pm and a repeat telecast at 9 pm.

Movies Hollywood
Jio MAMI: Royal Stag Barrel joins Star to promote short films

The Jio MAMI 18th Mumbai Film Festival with Star has managed to involve Royal Stag Barrel Select Large Short Films to provide a platform within the short films category.

Movies Hindi

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories