Remember when Pahlaj Nihalani was the most hated man in India? Well, turns out his successor Prasoon Joshi isn’t too different. Joshi ordered 300 cuts in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s much controversial Padmavat.
According to a report in Mumbai Mirror, Bhansali is racing against time to remove all mentions of Delhi, Chittor & Mewar from the film. And he’s doing this after Prasoon Joshi’s censor board ‘advised’ these modifications. When the initial reports of the film’s clearance from the CBFC emerged around the new year there were rumours of at least 26 cuts suggested, which Joshi later clarified as 5 ‘modifications’.
If this report is indeed true then what does it say about the state of free speech in this country? Pahlaj Nihalani’s CBFC had pulled something similar on Abhishek Chaubey’s Udta Punjab – it had ordered 94 cuts which the makers appealed against to FCAT. And the film’s final cut was finally released with an ‘A’ certificate and only a single cut.
However, it seems like Sanjay Leela Bhansali doesn’t have that luxury with a film that costs an estimated Rs 180 crore. With Viacom 18’s executives running against time to make sure that the film is ready for release on January 25, Bhansali has little choice but to to bow down to CBFC’s demands and to cut a film which satisfies everyone.
This is what it has all come down to, and to see the way in which Prasoon Joshi has dealt with the matter – some of his fans might consider jumping in a well.