A public interest litigation filed in the Punjab & Haryana High Court against the Hindi films Kyaa Kool Hain Hum 3 and Mastizaade has led to an unfortunate fallout, as per an article in the Economic Times. Filmmakers will now have to submit an undertaking to the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC, commonly referred to as the Censor Board) saying that they will not release censored content anywhere else, including the web.
In effect, the CBFC, which thus far had no say in what is released online, has managed to extend its ambit to the Internet.
The PIL, filed in January, showed that makers of both films had released content which had been excised from the version of the film that released in theatres. The CBFC certifies films currently as per the guidelines of the Cinematograph Act, 1952, for theatrical exhibition; for TV, the Cable Television Networks Rules is applied. As of now, there is no act governing how content should be certified (or censored) for the Internet.
The petitioner submitted to the court a CD of scenes from the two films containing scenes — described as "highly objectionable" and "vulgar" — that had been chopped off, leading to the court asking the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting to come up with a solution, since there was no law to be applied here. A fortnight later, the Ministry and CBFC filed an affidavit in the court that said:
"It is submitted that the deponent would ensure that through the undertaking to be submitted by the producers/directors that they would not release the excised portion of the feature/film to anybody."
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