It isn’t just the big names of Bollywood who have voiced their anger at the censor board’s controversial decision to reportedly make 89 cuts in the film ‘Udta Punjab’. Now a change.org petition started by Shriya Desai from Bangalore wants Pankaj Nihalani, the Chairperson of the Central Board of Film Certification to be fired. The petition addressed to Arun Jaitley, the Minister of Information and Broadcasting has received over 32,000 signatures.
Calling for his removal, the petition says Pankaj Nihalani has taken “arbitrary decisions”, and “embarrassed the movie industry” and the “Indian people”. Besides citing the latest controversy over ‘Udta Punjab’, the petition raises Nihalani’s “infamous” track record, which includes shortening all kissing scenes in the James Bond film ‘Spectre’ and beeping out curse words in the adult superhero film ‘Deadpool’, and giving the film ‘Aligarh’ an adult rating for dealing with homosexuality, but allowing humour targeted at the differently-abled in ‘Housefull 3’.
The petition concludes by urging the I&B ministry to remove Nihalani, stating that without him, “CBFC will have a chance of recovering and getting back to ‘certifying’ movies and not ‘censoring’ them.”