Kollywood struggles with online film certification process; does CBFC need to streamline system?
When the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) decided to take the entire process of application of films for certification online, it was deemed a benevolent move for the industry. M Venkaiah Naidu, the I&B minister, claimed that this motion would be a significant step towards making the CBFC office "paper less" and would expedite process and time for the board and producers alike, as per a report by The Economic Times.
But it seems, loopholes in the system have brought the Tamil film industry aka "Kollywood" to a state of chaos and confusion. According to a report by The Hindu, the filmmakers are experiencing a lot of delay and difficulty in handling the online procedure — termed as "E-Cinepramaan" — after the portal came into being from May 2017.
In making the process "transparent" and "corruption-less", CBFC has made it mandatory on the part of the producers to register their films using their Aadhar card or any other identification documents. This has literally opened a can of worms for the filmmakers in Tamil Nadu.
Speaking to the newspaper, G Dhananjayan, producer and founder-dean of BOFTA Film Institute, said, “Till April 2017, the censor process was manual. The new online system has some teething problems. When the registration is done, the One Time Password (OTP) goes to the mobile number given in the Aadhaar card, and if that number is no longer in use, then the application is not processed. If the application is rejected by either the regional or central office, the process has to be repeated from the beginning. Hence, there is considerable delay in censoring, as the process is new. The CBFC must streamline the online registration process, or make it simple for the producers to follow.”
However, it is also speculated that the system online has led to issues for unregistered producers in the industry.