“What do we do now?” asked Bond and abruptly the scene was cut. The sex sequence which was supposed to follow the dialogue was removed by our “sanskari” censor board and in the process another Bond movie was ruined for the Indian audiences. Besides this, each of the minute-long Bond kisses were cropped by 50%. Apparently the Indian “Janta” is fit enough to watch violence, a man popping someone’s eyes out, but not a few curse words and definitely not smooching.
The Central Board of Film Certification (CFBC) was always a little laid back, restricting art in the name of morals and so called Indian ethics. But ever since Pahlaj Nihalani became the chairperson of CFBC in January this year the freedom of expression has further been reduced. Many Bollywood filmmakers tried to raise their voices; they even spoke to the Information and Broadcasting minister, Rajyavardhan Rathore. But their voices were not loud enough to bring any change in the system.
What is happening to our censor board? It should have evolved with time but it’s moving in the opposite direction. “Jab we met” (2007) and “Ye Jawani Hai Diwani” (2013) were allowed to boast kissing scenes under “U/A” certification then why was discrimination shown towards “Spectre”? Bond movies are known for their Bond girls and steamy scenes. Every Bond fan is aware of it and that is exactly why they were so disappointed with the cuts. In a recent case “Angry Indian Goddesses” by Pan Nalin which was internationally acclaimed was made to sit for “moral tests” by the board. It failed the tests and as a result was chopped off its many scenes losing its beauty and essence.
In the name of “Sanskar” Indian Cinema is losing on the art of film making and this is certainly not good news. Something should be done before Bollywood reaches a stage where it has no awards to return. God save the Indian filmmakers.