Lipstick Under My Burkha: This film on gender equality faces CBFC ire for being too 'lady-oriented'
Lipstick Under My Burkha won the Oxfam Award for Best Film on Gender Equality at the Mumbai Film Festival. But the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) thinks otherwise. That is why it has refused to clear the film for being 'lady-oriented'.
Produced by Prakash Jha and directed by Alankrita Shrivastava, the film explores the lives of four women in a small town who indulge in small pleasures of autonomy behind the veil (literally and metaphorically). But the CBFC sees it as full of contagious sexual scenes, abusive words, audio pornography and woman fantasies and thus, deemed it fit to not clear the film for theatrical release, as reported by Business Standard.
The Board is also of the opinion that there is a slight sensitive touch about one particular section of society.
Jha has had a rough run with the CBFC on many occasions, the last one being last year when it refused to clear the political drama Jai Gangaajal for release. Jha approached the Revising Committee which cleared the film with a 'U/A' certificate and 20 cuts, including audio cuts of mild abuses. Eventually, the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT) cleared the film with a 'U/A' certificate and no cuts.
— 💄 Under My Burkha (@LipstickMovie) February 23, 2017
Now, Jha's next production finds itself in a similar soup, for even more bizarre reasons. As of now, the makers are awaiting a former letter from the Revising Committee, following which they will approach the FCAT. However, Scroll reports that the CBFC chief Pahlaj Nihalani has shifted the burden of obtaining the letter to the makers, claiming that it is their duty to collect it from the Revising Committee.
Mumbai Mirror quotes Shrivastava as saying, "It’s a feminist film with a strong female voice which challenges patriarchy. I think that’s why they don’t want to certify it. As a filmmaker, I stand by the story and will fight for it till the end."
Lipstick Under My Burkha stars Konkona Sen Sharma, Rathna Pathak Shah and Shashank Arora among others.