The censor board was Saturday hit by mass resignations a day after board chairperson Leela Samson quit citing coercion and corruption even as Information and Broadcasting Minister Arun Jaitley hit out at those quitting, calling them “UPA appointees” who had themselves to blame for any corruption.
Saturday saw eight of the CBFC members quitting. Ira Bhaskar, Lora Prabhu, Pankaj Sharma, Rajeev Masand, Sekharbabu Kancherla, Shaji Karun, Shubhra Gupta and T.G. Thyagarajan sent a joint resignation letter to Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore. By evening, two other members Mamang Dai and Arundhati Nag had quit.
The CBFC, which has 23 members on its board besides the chairperson, is a statutory body under the information and broadcasting ministry “regulating the public exhibition of films under the provisions of the Cinematograph Act 1952”.
The board members in their letter said they had tried to make the film certification process more uniform, transparent, consistent and sensitive to the freedom of filmmakers’ right to expression with responsibility but their struggle “has been extremely frustrating and disappointing”.