The general public of India has until July 2, 2021 to send in their thoughts about the Cinematograph (Amendment) Bill, 2021 which the Centre recently proposed. The Information and Broadcasting Ministry brought about this implementation after FCAT was abolished earlier this year.
What this means is that multiple changes will be reflected in the process of censoring films in India. This includes:
- The Indian government will have “revisionary powers” and “re-examine” films already censored by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).
- In "extreme situations", the government will have power to reverse the decision of the Censor Board.
- Film certifications will now be based on age. So instead of U – Unrestricted public exhibition, U/A- Requires parental guidance for children under 12 and A – Only for Adults, the categories will be:
- U/A 7+
- U/A 13+
- U/A 16+
- Movie piracy is punishable with a jail term of 3 months - 3 years and a fine of Rs. 3 lakh - 5% of the film's production cost.
- This also means that every authority in the CBFC-rule book will be dusted off by the government and thrusted in the face of movie-makers. Case in point: A movie from the South was recently denied a title for its Hindi dubbed version by the CBFC. According to the "already existing rules", the title of every dubbed film has to be either the original or an exact translation and no matter how the film industry handles title registrations flexibly, CBFC will stick to its "rules".
- Any appeal against these said authorities will have to be taken to High Court.