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CBFC CEO Anurag Srivastav reveals why application of Padmavati was rejected for certification

Censor Board CEO Anurag Srivastav talks at length about the 68-day rule which has sent Bollywood filmmakers into a tizzy.

bollywood Updated: Nov 24, 2017 18:37 IST
Rishabh Suri
Rishabh Suri
Hindustan Times
Anurag Srivastav,CBFC,Censor
Deepika Padukone plays Queen Padmavati in Bhansali’s ambitious project by the same name.

The film Padmavati has been mired in controversy ever since Sanjay Leela Bhansali started filming it. From vandalisation on the film’s sets in Jaipur, to the film’s song, Ghoomar, being panned for Queen Padmavati
(Deepika Padukone) showing her mid-riff— the political pressure has forced makers to ‘voluntarily’ defer the original release date of December 1.

A still from the song Ghoomar

What also led to much surprise was Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) rejecting the films’ application for certification on the grounds that it was ‘incomplete’. When we contacted the CEO of the Censor Board, Anurag Srivastav, about what exactly was deficient, he told us, “The disclaimer had not been mentioned by the makers. We need an official thing from the makers about what your stand on this actually is. Is it based on fiction, or based on historical facts - you have to put it completely. By leaving that out, the document was (deemed) incomplete, because for examination purposes, we need to know what they (makers) are saying.”

There has also been a lot of confusion over the 68-day rule, which apparently existed all these years too, but was never put into effect because of its impracticality. It says that CBFC can take 68 days to certify a film. Many feel it was a deliberate attempt to stall the release of Padmavati,as it was soon relaxed afterwards for films which had already announced their release dates and without a certificate, would miss out on their release date.

Anurag clarifies, “The rule has always been there. There has (of late) been a lot of clamour that films are not being released in time. But we just pointed out that we have this leeway of 68 days, because many times people come and say ‘I have to release my film tomorrow or day after’ when they have applied today! We have a huge number of applications, and there’s a huge backlog, especially in Mumbai. We have to then tell these makers that we cannot do it out of turn, because then, others will get affected.”

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First Published: Nov 24, 2017 18:37 IST