It seems the CBFC chief Pahlaj Nihalani is struggling to come to terms with the humiliation heaped on him by a damning verdict by Bombay High Court on Udta Punjab.
The certificate issued by Nihalani-run CBFC says that the Anurag Kashyap’s fil was ‘passed by High Court’ judges and not the screening committee, which saw the film.
Many have found this as ‘completely bizarre.’
A CBFC employee told Indian Express, “It will carry names of the committee members present at the screening. And in this case, the judges anyway didn’t watch the film.”
He said that films such as Black Friday, Fire, or documentaries such as Pankaj Butalia’s Textures of Loss too , did not have “Passed by Hon’ble High Court, Mumbai” written on the certificate.
This come a day after it was revealed that the film print sumbitted to the CBFC had been mysteriously leaked online just two days before the film’s release.
Udta Punjab was embroiled in a bitter controversy involding Pahlaj Nihalani, who had recommended 89 cuts but the Bombay High Court cleared the film with just one cut.
Documentary film maker Anand Patwardhan too appeared amused.
He said, “More than once I have had to approach the court after CBFC refused certification to my films. But eventually, when they were cleared, they didn’t bear the judge’s names or this text.”
Abhishek Chaubey, the director of the film, said what mattered was that Udta Punjab had been cleared.
He said, “I am relieved. I want the film to release on time now.”