The Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) played its ‘sanskaari’ dice again and did not give clearance to Producer Prakash Jha’s ‘Lipstick Under My Burkha’. The Board in a letter stated the reason behind the ban of the film which was “lady oriented fantasy”, it said, “The story is lady oriented, their fantasy above life. There are contentious sexual scenes, abusive words, audio pornography and a bit sensitive touch about one particular section of society, hence film refused under guidelines (sic).” Actor Sushant Singh who features in the movie contradicted the views of the board and said, “Movie has been appreciated, no one became a loose character after watching, nor was any culture destroyed. CBFC thinks a female with sexual desires is bad for our society, but films with cheap sexual innuendos gets passed.”
Director Alankrita Shrivastava believes that the board has assaulted women’s rights and said, “I believe the decision to refuse certification to our film is an assault on women’s rights. For too long, the popular narrative has perpetuated patriarchy by objectifying women or minimising their role in a narrative. So a film like Lipstick Under My Burkha, which challenges that dominant narrative is being attacked because it presents a female point of view. Do women not have the right of freedom of expression?”
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Producer, Prakash Jha in an interview with the media put forward his views on how no one should have the power to cut any scene and also that he is soon going to appear in the tribunal against the decision of the censor board. He said, “We need to remove the censor and bring in certification, no one should have the power to cut scenes. The audience is mature enough to understand what is good or bad. It is not due to one person or CBFC; it is about right to take the decision; the mentality and understanding. Yes of course, I will appeal in the tribunal like I have done before, that is the only option.”
Other actors who are connected with the movie like Vikrant Massey also came forward and spoke with the media. The fate of the movie now lies in the hands of the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT) who will soon be approached by Prakash Jha.