South Asia Censorship News

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 Update: India recommends...

Sunny Leone's Mastizaade, banned by Indian film censors


Link Here 19th June 2015  full story: Banned Movies in India...Sex, religion and easy offence
mastizaadeMastizaade is a 2015 India film by Milap Zaveri.
Starring Sunny Leone, Zachary Coffin and Tusshar Kapoor. Youtube link IMDb

After being banned by the Examining Committee and the Revising Committee, the new Sunny Leone starrer Mastizaade directed by Milap Zaveri has now been refused certification by the appeals Tribunal. The Appeals Tribunal wrote:

There is no redeeming feature of any sort in the film. The film is only concerned with the exploration of the different parts of the human anatomy, both male and female, and is such as to deprave the minds of the audience. We are thus constrained to hold that. Freedom of expression cannot and should not be interpreted as a license for the cine-magnates to make huge sums of money by pandering to shoddy and vulgar tastes.

 

  Banned on a whim...

India bans movie about murder during Sri Lankan civil war, lest it offend Sri Lanka


Link Here 31st May 2015
porkalathil oru pooIndia's Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) has rbanned Porkalathil Oru Poo , a film based on real life story of television journalist, Isaipriya, who was allegedly killed in captivity by the Sri Lankan armed forces in the final stages of the civil war in 2009, on the grounds that the film could strain friendly relations with foreign States.

The film director, K. Ganeshan, who is yet to get a formal letter of rejection from the CBFC, protested the decision. He said:

What if Sri Lanka is a friendly State? Are we not allowed to criticise even when its armed forces have committed blatant human rights abuses? Even the Tamil Nadu government has passed a unanimous resolution in the Assembly not to consider Sri Lanka as a friendly nation.

Actor S. Ve. Shekar, the Regional Chairman of CBFC, defended the censorship saying:

Certification of a movie cannot be given if it could strain friendly relations with a neighbouring country. We have only followed the rule book. We cannot give a certification based on our whims and fancies.

We can argue about what happened during the civil war, but that doesn't mean that we have to allow a film to be screened. Brutal murders happen in society, but does that mean we can make a film out of it? The director is free to screen the movie outside the country without any cuts.

 

 Update: Bollywood Mutiny...

Dissident censors to review all the decisions of their loony boss


Link Here 26th May 2015  full story: Indian Film Censor Pahlaj Nihalani...Loony film censor wants to ban everything

textures of lossDissident censor board members plan to review all the cuts made to the 30-odd Bollywood films certified since January, alleging inconsistencies on the part of the loony new chairperson Pahlaj Nihalani whom they accuse of being a dictator.

About half the 21 members of the Central Board of Film Certification support the move and are preparing for a stormy board meeting on June 9, where they will demand the review. Senior board member Ashoke Pandit explained to The Telegraph:

We want to compare which scenes and words were cut from which film and who headed the committees (that forced the deletions). Nihalani is running a one-man show, certifying films directly or through his chosen people. We too should know what is happening.

Another member, Nandini Sardesai, said Anurag Kashyap's Bombay Velvet was cleared with various cuss words the likes of which were removed from other films. She said:

Bombay Velvet came to a revising committee after the producers challenged the 'A' certificate recommended by the examining committee. The chairman himself headed the (revising) panel and awarded a 'U/A'. I'm surprised how he allowed so many abuses in the film while regularly beeping out cuss words from other films, including NH 10 .

Meanwhile Delhi's High Court has directed the censor board to allow a documentary on Kashmir's violence-affected people to be screened without cuts. The censors had suggested cuts to Textures of Loss and ordered the insertion of a disclaimer, a decision upheld by the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal. Both described certain scenes in the film as powder kegs that could lead to violence.

The high court said the threat of violence cannot overrule constitutional rights, and only gross violation of the Cinematograph Act could ground a film.

 

 Update: Dangerous Disbeliefs...

Third atheist blogger murdered in Bangladesh


Link Here 14th May 2015  full story: Blasphemy in Bangladesh...Penalising disbelief
Bangladesh flagAn atheist blogger has been hacked to death in north-eastern Bangladesh by religious intolerants, the third such deadly murderous this year. Police told AFP:

Attackers wearing masks hacked Ananta Bijoy Das with machetes in Sylhet city at around 8.30 this morning. We have learned that he was a writer

Imran Sarker, head of a Bangladeshi bloggers' association, told AFP Das was an atheist who wrote blogs for Mukto-Mona, a website formerly moderated by Avijit Roy, a Bangladeshi-born US citizen who was stabbed to death in the capital, Dhaka, in February.

Das's friend, Debasish Debu, said, referring to an alleged hitlist of atheist bloggers prepared by muslim intolerants:

In recent months he received threats from extremists for his writings. He was on their hitlist,

 

  The Government's Listening...

Indian government demands that radio stations deliver daily recordings of broadcasts to state censors


Link Here 2nd May 2015
I&B logoIndian community radio stations (CRS) are up in arms against a government order mandating daily submission of programmes that they broadcast. The move, they say, smacks of censorship and will prove to be a logistical nightmare.

The Community Radio Forum and several CR stations plan to protest against the decision and hope to meet information and broadcasting (I&B) ministry representatives next week.

In an order dated April 30 the I&B ministry directed radio stations:

To provide recordings of all programs broadcast by CRS on a daily basis from the date of receipt of this letter along with log books/Q sheet...

Unesco chair on community media Prof Vinod Pavarala said:

This is a ridiculous order which will amount to a logistical nightmare. It evokes fears of censorship and worse.

The concern was echoed by Gurgaon Ki Awaaz station director Arti Jaiman who expressed concern over the huge financial burden complying with the order would bring. I have no problem being accountable but this is a bureaucratic response to some pressure they are feeling.

 

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