Censor Board chief withdraws remarks against panel members | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Censor Board chief withdraws remarks against panel members

delhi Updated: Sep 22, 2013 23:32 IST

PTI
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Censor Board chairperson Leela Samson, who stirred a controversy by saying that 90% of panel members who are clearing movies in India are "uneducated" and an "embarrassment", on Sunday withdrew her statement while expressing regret.

"I regret any hurt or discomfiture caused to anyone by my statement which I have withdrawn today," Samson told PTI.

The Central Board of Film Certification Chairperson (CBFC) withrew her remarks after some angry members of the board had decided to send legal notices to her.

However, not all were satisfied with her retraction and one of the members is learnt to have conveyed to Samson that her remarks had created much damage and she should "tender unqualified apology and a statement in atleast 10 TV channels and 10 well known newspapers."

The CBFC chairperson's comments had been made in an email sent to some Mumbai resident and were later read out in the Supreme court by a lawyer who was demanding a ban on a film.

In the comments which created a furore, Samson, who is a noted Bharatnatyam dancer, had reportedly said that many panel members were "largely insensitive individuals, politically ambitious people and party workers" for whose decisions the board has to face criticism.

Samson is learnt to have said that "there are, no doubt, a few educated among them in every region, but 90 per cent of them are uneducated and an embarrassment to us.

"They cannot read nor write, cannot sign their names on the forms, leave alone read the script of the film they are watching or understand the responsibility that this empanelment entails," she reportedly said about the board members.

Meanwhile as a result of this controversy, the I&B ministry has decided to ask the censor board to ascertain the educational qualifications of all its members.

Sources said that a direction to this effect would soon be communicated to the board.

A well placed source said that presently there are no educational qualifications required to be a member of the Censor Board but Justice (retd) Mukul Mudgal commitee which is looking into aspects related to film certification process is likely to pay attention to this area also.

The committee has been given an extension and asked to submit its report by Octobet 15, the source added