Angry Censor Board members send chairperson Samson legal notice

Leela SamsonTwo members of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) advisory panel from Mumbai, Shalini Chavan, a law graduate, and Dr Asha Paranjape, an MD, jointly issued a legal notice against Samson.

Some members of the Censor Board have sent a legal notice to its chairperson, Leela Samson, over her statement that 90 per cent of those clearing movies in India are "uneducated" and an "embarrassment".

A day after The Indian Express reported the content of her e-mail that formed part of a petition in the Supreme Court, panel members across the country expressed their "shock", and demanded a public apology from Samson.

Two members of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) advisory panel from Mumbai, Shalini Chavan, a law graduate, and Dr Asha Paranjape, an MD, jointly issued a legal notice against Samson.

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"The panel members comprise people from all parts of the country and from all strata of the society and also include SC/ST members. How can all of them be painted with the same brush?" Chavan said over the phone from Mumbai, noting that Samson had called them "largely insensitive individuals, politically ambitious people and party workers".

Another member from Bombay, Nadeem Nusrath, who has done his M.Sc from the UK's University of Wales and BA in Economics from Bombay University, felt Samson's observations "in absentia of the Censor Board are not only wrong but based on hearsay and fed on popular but erroneous assumption that advisory board members are insensitive and immune to crimes depicted against women and humanity in popular cinema".

Nusrath also claimed that it was in fact during Samson's tenure that educated individuals, professionals, including noted lecturers and academicians and working journalists, were dropped from the advisory board on the oral explanation that these members could not be given another term.

Related: Is there a need for a film censor board?

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