Bengaluru, Apr 22: In agitating mood, the Chairman of Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce, Sa Ra Govindu has pen down a letter to Information and Broadcasting Ministry seeking the replacement of current Chief of Karnataka Regional Censor Board, Natasha S D'souza who is a Non-Kannadiga.
IIS (Indian Information Service), Natasha S D'souza took charge as the Karnataka Regional Officer of Censor Board for Film Certification on December 4, 2015, replacing M Nagendra Swamy. Natasha hails from Delhi.
The contention of Sa Ra Govindu is Regional Officer should possess vast knowledge of local language (Kannada) in order to censor the movies that arrive to the desk of the officer. Govindu speaking to OneIndia said "We have no personal grudge against the officer but our woe is her no knowledge of Kannada language."
For a recent Kannada movie, Kiragurina Gayyaligalu to which Natasha performed the duty of providing certificate went ahead to mute important dialogues of the movie. This sparked furore among the viewers and the cine-makers. However, Sa Ra pointed that "the regional officer did not had any problem with the same dialogue which is present in the promo or the trailer of the movie."
Sa Ra Govindu citing the double standards of the officer asked why dialogues were muted in the 139-minute-long cinema when it was not the case with trailer of the movie. Moreover how a person not knowing the Kannada language could certify films, he asked.
He alleged that while watching full length movie, the regional officer was joined by two more members of the board who were not presented during the first sitting when promotional video was subjected to censorship.
Sa Ra suspecting some foul play demanded- to end all such activities a Kannada knowing officer should be posted to the position. "I have written a letter to the Information and Broadcasting Ministry seeking the replacement of Natasha."
Agni Shridhar, writer critic artist from Karnataka is of a opinion that Natasha is not to be blamed for the fault. "Natasha is a very dignified woman, but due to her lack of knowledge of Kannada she has been misguided by a few chunk of people."
On being asked how important it is for the regional officer to know the language, Agni said it is not only language that plays a pivotal role, but also the knowledge of local culture too has a big role while delivering the duty of issuing certificate to cinema and censoring. "Cinema is reflection of language and culture of the region from where the movie is made," Agni observed.
"If we look at Kiragurina Gayyaligalu controversy, important dialogues were not muted in the promotional videos but later in the full-length movie it was removed."
Agni suspected that a few members in the censor board due to 'subconscious jealous' over the growth of the director Kiragurina Gayyaligalu, Suman Kittur misguided Natasha. These members are very senior to Sumana in the field of journalism, he divulged.
A former member of Regional Censor Board, Nagalakshi albeit opined top officer of the board must possess the knowledge of the language, justified the silencing of key dialogues in the movie. "In the civilised society such language is not used hence the muting is Ok," she argued.
When this news portal contacted Natasha to seek reaction on the developments, she said "I am on leave and contact me on Monday."