Save Our Cinema. Change The Sanskari Board. Send Email

Posted: February 15, 2016 by moifightclub in cinema
Tags: , ,

Cinema paradiso

Are you tired of Sanskari James Bond and Deadpool? Wanted to show the finger to the censor board but was afraid that the visual would be blurred out and your rants against it muted? Well then, lets do something about it.

The Shyam Benegal committee that has been setup to recommend changes to the censor board is asking for public comments at according to the guidelines given here.

We made our voices heard on net neutrality and showed that the common man can influence public policy. Let’s do the same for our right to watch what we want as adults. Go to this website and send an email to the committee. Please try and read the guidelines and send your own answers if you can. Otherwise, you can send the pre-drafted one on the site and edit it as required.

Thanks to the Save Our Cinema team, who came together yesterday and rolled this out in a day: /u/that_70_show_fan -our resident expert on censorship who drafted our response as well, and /u/avinassh who coded this website in time. Please let us know if you have any suggestions or feedback.

Save Our Cinema

he ‘Save Our Cinema’ coalition was set up to help the Indian movie watching public participate in the policy building process around censorship in the country. The Shyam Benegal committee is finalizing recommendations for a censor board revamp and is asking for public comments. We have created an easy to use tool that helps you send your responses quickly.

Why send an email?

Have you recently gone to a movie in India and scratched your head trying to understand what was going on because of all the muted dialogues? For example, in a recently released Hollywood movie which was given ‘Adult’ rating, all double meaning dialogues were ordered to be replaced with ‘Man and Woman’, and all instances of the words ‘asshole’ were ordered to be muted.

If you are tired of this ridiculous curtailment of the freedom of expression guaranteed in our constitution, there is a ray of hope. The Union Government has constituted a committee headed by Shyam Benegal, one of the most respected film makers in the country to recommend how to revamp the censor board. The committee is asking for views of film viewers on the certification process being followed by the CBFC and suggestions if any within the ambit of the existing Cinematograph Act, 1952, rules and guidelines which have withstood the scrutiny of various courts to help them finalize their recommendations. Submissions should be restricted to two pages and covering important aspects detailed here: NFDC Guidelines.

We encourage you to read the guidelines and then scroll down and click ‘Send Email’. You can edit the email before sending. You can also copy the email content to your clipboard to manually compose your email. Please keep us in BCC so that we can keep a track of emails sent. We will not use your email addresses for any other purpose. However, you can remove us from BCC if you would like.

You can copy-paste/edit the email content from here and send directly. If not, copy-paste/edit and send from your mailbox.

(content via Reddit India and Save Our Cinema)

  1. Apan says:

    Thanks for this. Sharing the mail which I sent in case somebody finds any arguments good enough to include in their mail, in a language they want to. Please note that due to lack of time, I haven’t been able to word it as well as I’d like to. 🙂


    First of all, it is great to see that a government body is seeking public views on the matter of CBFC. I am putting forward my views here:

    1. It is clear from it’s name that CBFC is a body for film certification and not film censorship. Viewers do often need to have some credible knowledge regarding the suitability of the content of the film for their children. However the way CBFC has come to function in India, it merely does not act as a certification body but as a censorship body, which determines the kind of content which people of the country can see or not, regardless of the certification of any film.

    2. It is pretty obvious that cinema cannot have any special privileges over other modes of expression, but it should not have any special restrictions also. The laws dealing with other forms of expression should be de-facto applicable to cinema and there should not be any special need to have any separate mechanism for dealing with cinema.

    3. Film Certification came into being when there was no private broadcast mediums and cinema was the only mass audio/visual medium with direct impact on the citizens of the country. However in these times, when there are so many mass mediums which facilitate free flow of information, it is quite redundant to have any barriers in what can be shown in cinemas.

    4. So while cinema censorship, has absolute no power over the kind of content citizens have access to, it only hampers the specific experience the cinema provides, for which viewers are legitimately paying.

    5. There does not seem any issue with citizens using whatever language they do in private, so its absurd to let them hear it on a big screen, for which they have consented to pay. Of course they should be informed of the kind of content in film, so that they can make an informed decision.

    6. Cinema should have same freedom to deal with political, religious and other sensitive matters, that are with regular press. While cinema is understood to be a medium of entertainment, it should be the prerogative of the filmmakers in what way they want to deal with cinema they are making. The audience can also make an informed decision if they want to go watch whatever kind of cinema they want to.

    7. There is a health ministry notification which requires films to have smoking disclaimers, before the film, during intermission and most unfortunately on the screen while a film is playing. It is absolute mockery of any artist, their art and viewer sensibilities, for artists to have any such super-imposition on their arts. Can we imagine putting disclaimers on famous paintings, statues etc. Cinema should not be treated as a soft target, by government and if govt wants to propagate anti-smoking messages, it should use its own resources and not compel private resources.

    8. The govt should also ensure that playing of cinema is not obstructed by any miscreants, who claim any sort of offence since they always have the choice to not see any cinema and cannot obstruct other individuals’ right to decide for them what they can and cannot see.

    9. If the govt does not protect freedom of expression through cinema, it will create an atmosphere of self-censorship by the filmmakers, where they will not be able to express themselves the way they want to, since making cinema requires huge costs and a filmmaker needs an assurance that they can earn back through viewers who choose to see their films.

    10. The CBFC members need to be educated that their job is to certify cinema, and even if they are not cutting films, they are doing their job well enough.


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