Lip­stick direc­tor a liar, says Ni­ha­lani; film­maker dis­mis­sive

Hindustan Times (Patna) - Live - - Front Page - Sub­hash K Jha and Monika Rawal Kukreja

The feud be­tween Pahlaj Ni­ha­lani, chair­per­son of the Cen­tral Board of Film Cer­ti­fi­ca­tion, and Alankrita Shri­vas­tava, direc­tor of the film Lip­stick Un­der My Burkha, con­tin­ues. Fol­low­ing a re­cent in­ter­view by Shri­vas­tava, in which she spoke of how she was treated by the CBFC when try­ing to get her film cer­ti­fied, Ni­ha­lani says that the film­maker is car­ry­ing on about the film’s re­jec­tion just for pub­lic­ity.

Ni­ha­lani says, “These are tac­tics to draw at­ten­tion to her film. You tell me, what’s the only point of cu­rios­ity about the film? That the [CBFC] Ex­am­in­ing Com­mit­tee re­jected her film? She has been cash­ing in on that for months now.” He adds that the term “lady-ori­ented”, used to de­scribe the film, didn’t come from him. “It was [writ­ten in the let­ter] by the com­mit­tee. I nei­ther viewed nor ex­pressed my opin­ion over the film.”

Shri­vas­tava said in that in­ter­view: “The Ex­am­in­ing Com­mit­tee was di­vided in its opin­ion, so, we ap­proached the Re­vis­ing Com­mit­tee. Ni­ha­lani, who was present at the screen­ing, made me feel like a crim­i­nal.” Ni­ha­lani re­futes this, say­ing, “She is a liar. I was never aloof or rude... I very clearly re­mem­ber ask­ing her to sit. She didn’t re­spond. I told her that her film was re­jected by the Ex­am­in­ing Com­mit­tee. She said she knew that would hap­pen. It was a civil, to-the-point con­ver­sa­tion. How did that make her feel like a crim­i­nal? Does the film have any­thing else to rec­om­mend it­self ?”

In re­sponse, Shri­vas­tava tells us, “In a democ­racy, the cer­ti­fi­ca­tion process can’t be a sit­u­a­tion where you have to feel like you have to pro­tect your film. It should be a mat­ter-of-fact pro­ce­dure.”

I have noth­ing against [Ni­ha­lani]. All I’m say­ing is that the whole idea and pro­ce­dure of cen­sor­ship should be thrown out of the win­dow

ALANKRITA SHRI­VAS­TAVA, FILM­MAKER

What’s the only point of cu­rios­ity about the film? That the CBFC re­jected it? [Shri­vas­tava] has been cash­ing in on that for months now

PAHLAJ NI­HA­LANI, CBFC CHAIR­PER­SON

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