Leela Samson, the chairperson of the Censor Board complained that the producer and the lobby of The Dirty Picture is pressurising the council while the Balaji producer did not deny the accusation.
The entire mudslinging started when the Censor Board decided to stop the much awaited telecast of The Dirty Picture a few hours before the scheduled time, which was 12 pm on April 22.
The Censor Board has been the target of much criticism and disapproval since then. The CBFC chairperson Leela Samson and the CEO Mrs Pankaja Thakur had arrived in Mumbai for a conference to clarify things and discuss controversial issues like certification of films, showing smoking in films and censoring sexual content in films. Together they tried to defend the CBFC but at the same time managed to make a few remarks about the connections and dirty play present in the industry today.
Leela Samson said that the Dirty Picture lobby has been trying its best to pressurise the Censor Board and the industry should be more vocal about the implementation of the cinematograph act if it wants a new one. Pankaja Thakur took a more diplomatic stance and said that the Information and Broadcasting Ministry will be contacted to decide the issue involving the Dirty Picture and its producer, Ekta Kapoor.
The Censor Board officials have definitely not been able to accept the kind of criticism and opposition that it has been receiving through the social networking sites ever since they decided to stop the premiere of the movie on television.
Tanuj Garg , CEO of Balaji had said on April 22 that the way the premiere was stopped in spite of the production company having procured a lawful censor certificate was disheartening. He went on to complain that they had been purposely victimised and this kind of treatment had not been meted out to any other film or production company.
Garg did not change his stance when we contacted him yesterday and refused to acknowledge the existence of any lobby. He said that the Censor Board was mistaking the unconditional support given by the industry as lobbying. He continued to say that the industry acknowledges that injustice had been done with the film and the fact that it could happen to any other movie. According to him it is natural to feel concerned and anxious about the situation.
Anupam Kher, who used to be the chairperson of CBFC too denied the existence of any lobby within the industry. Ekta Kapoor, on the other hand deliberately accepted that she can yield much power in today’s industry. Not only did she admit of a lobby working on her behalf but also said that Ramesh Sippy and Mahesh Bhatt had a talk with the Information and Broadcasting Ministry. She said that she expected the ministry to be more considerate and understanding than the Censor Board and resove the issue soon.
Mahesh Bhatt said that the industry will not desert Ekta and Balaji at this hour of need.