Mumbai: Anurag Kashyap, Hansal Mehta, Vetri Maaran, Nandita Das, Shabana Azmi, Farhan Akhtar, Zoya Akhtar, and Dibakar Banerjee are among the actors and filmmakers who have written an open letter to the Information and Broadcasting Ministry opposing the government’s proposed amendments to the 1952 Cinematograph Act. They have said that the move has the potential to ‘endanger freedom of expression and democratic dissent.’
The Centre posted the draught Cinematograph (Amendment) Bill 2021 earlier this month for public comment until July 2. The latest proposal would change the Cinematograph Act of 1952 to grant the Centre ‘revisionary powers’ and allow it to ‘re-examine’ films that have already been cleared by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).
On Sunday evening, Eeb Allay Ooo renowned filmmaker Prateek Vats and documentary filmmaker Shilpi Gulati, along with an academician and a lawyer, produced an online letter with over 1400 signatories from various walks of life.
‘In yet another setback for the film industry, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has proposed further revisions to the Cinematograph Act, giving the Central Government the right to cancel or recall certification of films that have already been approved by the Censor Board. This clause will effectively give the Central Government total power over cinema exhibition in the country, thereby threatening freedom of expression and democratic dissent,’ the letter added, undermining the Censor Board and the Supreme Court’s sovereignty.