Mumbai: “The government doesn’t want Ram’s name to be taken in the film but wants a Ram Mandir,” said producer Pahlaj Nihalani after he moved the Bombay High Court, challenging Central Board of Film Certification’s (CBFC) suggestion to make 20-odd cuts in his upcoming film ‘Rangeela Raja.’
Moving the plea, the court on Wednesday asked the tribunal to hear the issue on the already given date of November 23.
“We are waiting for FCAT’s decision which will come out on November 23 and if we agree to their decision, the movie will be released. Or else we have to come back here on November 28. The censor board should be ashamed and shut down for removing Ram’s name from the film,” said the former censor board chief.
Talking about his plea, Nihalini also mentioned how it is unjustified for the film. “All the pain is unjustified. Many people including politicians have talked about Ram Mandir and Ayodhya but they don’t want to see it in a film,” he added.
This comes almost two weeks after the Court’s vacation bench refused to urgently hear Nihalani’s plea against the CBFC regarding his next venture. Nihalani has claimed that the cuts suggested for his film were illogical and meaningless. “There is no vulgarity, no double meaning dialogues. Still, I’ve been asked to delete a massive number of dialogues and scenes,” he had told ANI.
The producer had also alleged that the CBFC prioritized multi-starrer ‘Thugs Of Hindostan’ over his film, as chairman Prasoon Joshi is ‘friends’ with Aamir Khan.
“My film was reviewed 40 days after applying. I was going to release my film on November 8. ‘Thugs of Hindostan’ had applied 20 days after me. However, Prasoon Joshi, who is a good friend of Aamir Khan, gave preference to his movie to my film,” said Nihalani.
He had also stated that the CBFC did not follow the set guidelines for reviewing a film within 21 days of the makers approaching the board.
With ‘Rangeela Raja’, Nihalani is reuniting with Bollywood powerhouse Govinda after 25 years. They have earlier worked together in films like ‘Ilzaam’, ‘Shola Aur Shabnam’ and ‘Aankhen’.
Govinda’s comeback film also features Shakti Kapoor, Digangana Suryavanshi, Mishika Chourasia, and Anupama Agnihotri.
As the censor board chairman, Nihalani had faced flak for raising an objection to the word ‘intercourse’ in the promo of Anushka Sharma and Shah Rukh Khan-starrer ‘Jab Harry Met Sejal’ and also for refusing to clear the women-centric movie ‘Lipstick Under My Burkha.’