CBFC may soon no longer hold authority to 'censor'; I&B Ministry to send draft bill for approval
It was earlier reported that Information and Broadcasting Minister Venkaiah Naidu had said the government is amenable to a majority of Shyam Benegal committee's recommendations and will amend the Cinematograph Act soon.
Now, Hindustan Times reports the key aspects of a draft bill that has been proposed keeping into account the recommendations of the Benegal committee. The report states that the committee has suggested that the role of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) be only confined to its literal role, i.e., certification instead of instructing the filmmakers to chop pieces from their drafts.
The committee has suggested that the CBFC will now only give reasons for the certification they have given to the film. They can no longer 'order' the makers to censor their products. However, if the makers wish to get their certification changed, they will have to make necessary changes in the film in order to make it more universally watchable.
The same report states that the committee has also suggested that the categories of certification be increased by adding new ones like UA 12+, UA 15+ and adult-with-caution. Also, only the Central Government would hold the power to suspend the screening of any film.
This draft bill has been prepared by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry and will now be sent for inter-ministerial consultations before sending it for the Cabinet approval.