Summary: Finally, Bollywood can now breathe a sigh of relief as CBFC chief Pahlaj Nihalani has been sacked and lyricist Prasoon Joshi will take over as a new chair person.
Much mired in controversy, Pahlaj Nihalani has been sacked as chief of the censor board. Replacing him is Rang De Basanti lyricist Prasoon Joshi. He will soon take over as the new CBCF chairman.
Earlier rumors were a riff that filmmaker Prakash Jha, Madhur Bhandarkar, and TV producer and actor Chandraprakash Dwivedi could replace the controversial CBFC chief.
Colleagues of Mr. Nihalani had accused him of treating the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) like his personal fiefdom, while film makers and critics accused him of demanding irrational cuts and moral policing.
Recent scandals involved a demand for multiple cuts in Madhur Bhandarkar`s "Indu Sarkar" which depicts the Emergency and his refusal to certify "Lipstick Under My Burqa" which explores female sexuality. A CBFC member had described it as "lady-oriented," complaining of sexual scenes, abusive words, audio pornography (phone sex) and implied the film might offend Muslims.
A timeline of Nihalani`s controversies:-
• January 19, 2015: Pahlaj Nihalani appointed as CBFC chief
• March 2015: 50 Shades of Grey not allowed to hit screens despite more than 70 cuts
• March 2015: `A` certificate to Anushka Sharma`s NH10 after 9 cuts
• March 2015: Banned Unfreedom for nudity & love making scenes
• March 2015: Muted the word ‘lesbian’ in Yash Raj films’ Dum Laga Ke Haisha
• August 2015: Documentary The Battle for Banaras on Narendra Modi-Arvind Kejriwal battle denied approval
• November 2015: Kissing scenes in Spectre slashed because length of kisses was ‘too excessive’
• December 2015: Censor board criticised for passing obscene trailers of Kya Kool Hai Hum 3 and Mastizaade
• January 2016: Gave `A` certificate to Aligarh trailer because of homosexual theme
• June 2016: Asked the makers of Udta Punjab to drop reference of Punjab from the movie and do around 89 cuts in the film which includes, dialogues, scenes & cuss words
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