By Team Bollyy
New Update


Love them or hate them, oh come on, who are we kidding? Who can love them? The point is, you just can't ignore them. The Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) becomes the talk of the town as soon as a teaser/trailer/film reaches the CBFC office. A dash of progressive (or as they call it, not sanskari) content and what ensues is a massive battle between film-makers and the CBFC. The end result usually is ruthless chopping, uncalled for film certificates, delayed releases and eventually huge loses for the producers and distributor—all thanks to a board whose work is just to certify films and not decide who gets to see what. Several Bollywood films have gone under CBFC's knife and here's a list of some of these films who faced some silly and not-so-reasonable decisions.

1. Jab Harry Met Sejal  

The latest film to come under the scanner of CBFC is the Shah Rukh Khan starer, Jab Harry Met Sejal. In true SRK style, the team decided to release a series of mini-trails before the release of the actual trailer. The second mini-trail featured the female lead Anushka Sharma uttering the word 'intercourse' and as expected, CBFC went on for a toss!

According to a report by Indian Express, after watching the promo, Pahlaj Nihalani (the infamous chairman of CBFC) told an English daily that they have granted the film a U/A certification to the trailer on the condition that the word 'intercourse' be deleted. “They’re yet to come back to us on that. So in principle, the trailer has not been passed yet,”  Nihalani said. “They’ve uploaded the uncut trailer on YouTube. The CBFC cannot stop content on the internet. But we can and will stop the broadcast of the uncensored footage on television,” he added.

But on 23rd June 2017, Nihalani went a step ahead and said that he would clear the use of the word 'intercourse' in the promo if he gets one lakh votes from the common people in its support. In an interview to a TV channel, he said: “You take voting from the public and I will clear the word (intercourse) on the promo and the film also. I want 1 lakh votes and I want to see that India has changed and Indian families want their 12-year-old kids to understand the meaning of this word (intercourse).”

Well, we hope he knows whom he is messing with !

2. Lipstick Under My Burkha

The in-your-face film that deals with themes of feminism has been in the news ever since the first teaser of the film came out. The film explores the stories of four women trying to explore their ideas of freedom, life and sexuality - a theme that obviously didn't go down too well with the CBFC. The film was tagged 'lady-oriented' 'sensitive' and about 'women's fantasy above life' and the certification body eventually refused to certify the film, thus stalling it's release.

After a long tiresome battle by the debutante director, Alankrita Srivastva, the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT), decided that the film can be issued an adult certificate, equivalent to an NC-17 rating. It was only after several people from the film fraternity came along strongly that the film got a release date of 21 July 2017. Haven't seen the powerful trailer yet? Watch it right here!

3. Udta Punjab 

The film, based on the drug menace in Punjab was made with an intention of understanding and bringing to light the intensity of the problem at hand. However, the film was issued a long list of cuts to be made to the film due to its expletive-laden dialogues and scenes showing drug consumption. The list was so baseless that they wanted all mentions of the places in Punjab to removed the film as well as the title! And call the film what, Mr. Nihalani? Just Udta?

Thankfully, the biggest names from the industry came out to support the film and it was only after a lot of drama the makers' countless appeals to the CBFC and the I&B Ministry (Information & Broadcasting) that the film was finally cleared for release.

However, just a few hours before the release, the censor copy of the film was leaked online. Do you also smell something? We guess that's how Shahid would have reacted when he met the CBFC Chairperson!

4. Baar Baar Dekho 

Katrina Kaif and Sidharth Malhotra starrer Baar Baar Dekho was granted a U/A certificate by the CBFC. This certification came only after the team gave in to the board's orders of having two scenes cut from the film. According to reports in TOI, "the makers were asked to cut a 'shot of a bra' and a reference to 'Savita Bhabhi' - the comic book porn character - in order to receive a certification. Angry members of the BBD team questioned the board's decision asking if we lived in the Victorian age where women's lingerie could never be spoken of in public. As the film has been directed by a female director - Nitya Mehra - the team also argues that using lingerie scenes to titillate the audience are nil."

We couldn't agree more! Are we seriously living in the 21st Century? Is this the development we boast of? Well, we're sure poor Kat would have felt something like this...

5. La La Land 

It is not just our Bollywood films who face the wrath of the CBFC; International releases aren't spared either! Also, not everyone gives in to CBFC's baseless demands. One of the finest example of it is how the media giant Viacom 18 gave it back to the board after they were told to chop off scenes from the global hit La La Land in order to get a U/A certificate. Rather than chopping off the scenes, the producers said that they won't chop out the scenes and would take an Adults Only certificate instead.


There's a long list of unreasonable cuts and demands made by the CBFC and we just can't understand how a bunch of people can decide what a billion people will watch. Films are just the mirror of the society - what is so wrong in accepting with what is happening in the real world? Is this what democracy is about? Is this what Freedom of Speech is about? We all feel like this at the moment. Don't we?

Share your views on Pahlaj Nihalani, CBFC and the whole idea of censorship in films in the comments section below.

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