Notorious for its arbitrary decisions on films, the censor board is now accused of censoring Nobel laureate Amartya Sen's comments in a documentary on him, "The Argumentative Indian". Dr Sen is believed to have objected to the Central Board of Film Certification beeping words like "Gujarat", "cow" and Hindutva view of India".
Filmmaker Suman Ghosh confirmed to NDTV today that he has been told by the board his documentary will be released with a UA certificate - requiring parental guidance - only if he agrees to these cuts. Dr Sen is believed to have refused to accept the cuts.
If Mr Ghosh wants his film to be released as is, he has to appeal to a review committee and then go to a tribunal. If it still doesn't pass, the makers have the option of moving court.
The documentary was filmed over 15 years by Mr Ghosh, and mainly features a conversation between Dr Sen and one of his students, economist Kaushik Basu.
The film has already debuted in New York and London. It was screened in Kolkata for the first time yesterday, but further shows are in question now.
In an interaction after the screening, Dr Sen commented, apparently referring to the situation in Bengal: "The time has come to unite against communalism and sectarianism. Dominance of ideas of vision has gone down. People are focused on tactics and winning elections. Communalists will win elections again and again as they are better at tactics."
Paul Samuelson, Kenneth Arrow, Timothy Scanlon and former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh star in the film as they talk about Dr Sen.