Former censor board chief Pahlaj Nihalani to file RTI over CBFC functioning

Former CBFC chairperson Pahlaj Nihalani says he is very worried about the way the CBFC is currently functioning under its current chairperson Prasoon Joshi.

“He’s an absentee chairperson. So many producers have complained that he is never in office. Mr Joshi needs to be answerable to all producers whose films are submitted for certification, and not just to his chosen friends. He is hardly ever in office, so producers who have a problem with the certification don’t know where to go. Not everyone is as privileged as Aamir Khan,” says Nihlani sardonically.

He is all set to file an RTI against the CBFC. “My questions are simple – if Mr Prasoon Joshi who is the chairperson of the CBFC is rarely seen in the CBFC office then who takes all day-to-day decisions on his behalf? And how can we have a functional efficient censor board when its chairperson is busy with other things? As a producer and the man who occupied Mr Joshi’s chair before him, I have the right to know about the functioning of the censor board, some transparency is required,” reasons Nihalani.

He sees a severe absence of transparency in the workings of the CBFC. “What are the guidelines being followed by the CBFC? Why are there so many discrepancies in the process of certification? I am told the guidelines are constantly being bent to please influential producers. I am obviously not one of the beneficiaries. My Rangeela Raja is stuck at the censor board. I am fighting it out in court. But, Mr Joshi would have to answer fundamental questions on the functioning of the CBFC.”

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Free Press Journal