Last month, the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) cause controversy when it a issued a list of English and Hindi swear words that were to be banned.
Now the CBFC has asked the filmmakers of Dum Laga Ke Haisha to mute the word ‘lesbian’ from their new movie.
The word was supposed to be said in a court scene where a young boy asks, ‘Mummy, is older sister turning into a lesbian?’
However, the CBFC ruled that it was ‘not appropriate’ for a child to say lesbian and muted the word, as well as deleting four Hindi words.
Director Sharat Katariya said he was amused when censors first objected to the word lesbian and asked,
“[they] said you are removing gaalis (swear words) but lesbian is not a gaali, why are you removing it? So they said the fact that a little kid mouths it, it is not appropriate. And they didn’t find it (the context the word was being used) humorous. But otherwise “lesbian” word can be used. I didn’t argue too much as there wasn’t much scope anyways.”
Director and censorship board member Ashoke Pandit condemned the decision as ‘shameful’ on Twitter with the hashtag ‘freedom of expression.’
The list of words 'not to be used in films' issued by the Chairperson is against the freedom & creative liberty of a filmmaker. #CBFC
— Ashoke Pandit (@ashokepandit) February 13, 2015
“This entire thing makes no sense. To mute the word ‘lesbian’ as though it is a swear word is to disrespect the feelings of the entire LGBT community and this decision doesn’t seem to be in accordance with any rules of the Cinematograph Act, 1952, which is followed by the examining committees who rate the film.”
The romantic comedy stars Ayushmann Khurana and Bhumi Pednekar in lead roles, featuring Kumar Sanu in a cameo.