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Through Films to Society; The CBFC fiesta

By PN Team Posted on Aug, 16 2017

It is indeed the journey of Indian cinema from 'desire of the society' to ' reflection of the society'.


Congress was formed in 1885. A group of elite Indians who were capable of representing the then population of 238,830,958 citizens. Why there were no objections by British crown when the congress was established. There may be two major reasons that let the easy formation of the party, firstly, it was chiefly comprised of the elites of Indian society that were hard to question and secondly, there was a pressure accumulated in the India which was somewhere released once people came to know that there is an organisation that could represent their voice. Everyone will prefer war at one front than mutinies on multiple fronts. That's what Congress actually did to the then urge for freedom from foreign rule. 

Things have changed a lot. Now, India is a free nation. Sovereign and Independent but why shall we remember the formation of Congress in 2017. On 11th of August the Government of India passed an order to release Pahlaj Nihalani from the capacity of Chairman of Central Board of Film Certification. It is a major step and more important a step that has multiple impact. The middle class of India has a new power. Power of education. They have multiple means to be educated and thanks to telecommunication revolution that has incredibly worked in this positive break through. These little pieces of gadgets in the hands of middle class, have somewhere given hope to the common people to become elite. If not completely, then at-least pretend to be elite by knowing what is going on. 

The recent realistic cinema has seen many examples for as to how reality can be represented in cinema. Take the example of "Udta Punjab" or "Lipstick Under My Burkha" or "Toilet- Ek Prem Katha", these are those films that are relevant to the society. How society works, how it feel, what is the reality and what not. The drug addicted Punjab is reality and this film portrayed the truth of the most fertile land of India. Feminism, which demands proper representation of half the population of India their feelings, the problem they face, their demands. The open defecation problem in India. These are not just mere films they are the proper reflection of India-today. 

When CBFC started chopping the realities from the cinema with the reason that these are inappropriate, the middle class who knows what it faces in day-today life felt that their freedom of expression in violated. Crime in the society against women, drug abuse and what not, people are facing them and when a fair attempt to represent them is ventured then why CBFC is jeopardizing it. The rest of the goods were done by the media. Owing to these factors, pressure though not so hard as at the time of formation of Congress, but good enough to make everyone aware that something is wrong and people started questioning the certification system. 

What good has it done? Well, the government has tackled multiple question with this one step. First of all, people will see what they want to see. The things they can connect to. Second, a message was sent that yes the government do listen to its people and the demands won't go unheard. Third, it is hard to sack a minister or someone who is inside the government because if it is done people may question the integrity within the government. It was the safest way to send a message without any trace of negativity. 

So, the pressure released, at least for now. People seek entertainment to escape from reality. The taste of consumers had changed. They know what is real and what is not. Cinema, today, is doing nothing but catering the latest demand. It is indeed a journey from 'desire of the society' to ' reflection of the society'.


Written By: Saurabh Tiwari

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of . The writers are solely responsible for any claims arising out of the contents of this article.