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Regional Censor Board-KFCC conflict brewing; the root of clash is 'course' of issuing certificate

Google Oneindia News

Bengaluru, Apr 25: The root of the conflict between Karnataka Regional Censor Board of Film (CBFC) Certification and Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce (KFCC) lies in the 'course' through which the regional censor board issued certificate to a Kannada movie, Lehya Ajji Lehya.

First in the history of Kannada cine industry, the censor board has issued certificate for a movie title verified by Karnataka Dubbing Film Chamber of Commerce which came into being three months back. Never in the history of Kannada industry, certificates were issued, unless KFCC verified titles of movies.

A copy of government correspondence done with the KFCC

KFCC has a long history and its inception dates back to 1944. To 2016, since the establishment of KFCC, censor board has been issuing certificates for cinema titles registered in KFCC. Interestingly, the regional CBFC accepting a document of a nascent chamber of commerce decided to censor a movie. Mind you, this is first in the history of 72 years.

'A' certificate has been issued to Ajji Lehya movie by the censor board headed by the officer named Natasha D'Souza. Sa Ra Govindu, President of the KFCC says there is a government order on certifying movies by the board.

[Regional Censor Board Officer Natasha faces heat over no knowledge of Kannada]

A government (Ministry of Information and Broadcasting) correspondence done with the KFCC dated June 6, 1990 (available with OneIndia) clearly mentioned that 'authorized correspondence' from Film Publicity Screening Committee of KFCC is necessary for the acceptance of application from producers to certify movies.

A government communication addressed to secretary of the Film Publicity Screening Committee said "Kindly refer to your letter No.P. 12/VC/DSC/2936/90 dated 5-6-90 regarding Film Publicity Screening Committee. This office is in receipt of communication in this regard from the headquarters. We shall, here after, insist, on a certificate from the above committee while accepting applications for certification from producers.

However, in two instance in 2014 and 2015, regional censor board has rejected to carry forward concerns of two film chambers (Bruhath Kannada Chalanachitra Mandali and Uttara Karnataka Chalanachitra Mandali). The then Regional Officer of CBFC, M Nagendra Swamy discharged this.

Nagendra Swamy told this news portal that above mentioned film chambers approached censor board seeking issuance of certificate for titles verified by these chambers. "I pointing out the legal course said, not all the chambers can verify titles and approve publicity materials of movies for public viewing as government has vested powers only on KFCC for the same."

Swamy contended that government came up with this decision to rest powers on KFCC to avoid Pandora's Box like situation. If there are many chambers with powers to certify movie titles, then in all possibility, each chamber would in one point of time come up with same names creating chaos in titling. The government has given powers to KFCC to approve publicity materials of movies and title verification.

For a movie to be censored by the board, it is mandatory for an individual or an organisation approaching the board to provide a document showing the title of the movie has been verified by the KFCC. Nagendra Swamy added that along many other documents, title verification is a primary necessity.

The present Regional Officer of CBFC, Natasha, according to Sa Ra Govindu, has not followed due course, while issuing certificate to Ajji Lehya. "Natasha has said on the basis of Bombay High Court order, the CBFC has issued clearance for the Regional Office to certify the film. But that clearance order has not shown to me despite several requests to put out before the KFCC," Sa Ra divulged.

OneIndia News

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