The CBFC chairperson Pahlaj Nihalani is a rather unpopular man within the film industry.
Several actor-producers are routinely miffed with him as he is known to invoke a personal moral code on the films that are submitted to the Censor Board for clearance.
Case in point was Abhishek Chaubey's Udta Punjab which had to go through a stringent censorship process as Nihalani refused to clear the film unless the makers agreed to delete as many as 80 scenes.
If anything, he's not exactly the saviour of freedom of expression as he has proved himself to be pro-censorship
So when he was asked about his thoughts on the recent attack on Sanjay Leela Bhansali on the Padmavati sets by the Karni Sena in Rajasthan, reacted with uncharacteristic maturity.
In an interview with DNA, he said, "Everyone has a point of view and there are various historical versions and all of them claim that they are factually correct. Who is going to take the guarantee for this?"
He also added that filmmakers had the privilege to take cinematic liberties irrespective of the subject matter.
"Whether it is a historical (film) or otherwise, films have their own concepts. The writer and the director are free to exercise their creative imagination. After all, it is cinema," he said.
He also mentioned that it wasn't the duty of the Censor Board to verify historical facts and that their job was only to see if the film 'conforms to social norms.'
The Karni Sena objected to the depiction of a romance track between Rani Padmini and Alauddin Khilji. There was no evidence that there was a romantic track between the two in the first place. Bhansali later ensured the fringe group that no such sequence will be shown in the film.
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