Are we really living in a democracy? We think not. Pahlaj Nihalani, the CBFC Chairman, has declared that merely a ticker saying ‘smoking/alcohol is harmful to health’ is not enough anymore. “We feel the superstars who are followed by millions and who set an example in societal behaviour must not be shown drinking or smoking on screen unless the provocation for doing so is really strong,” he said.
By this logic, some of the greatest gems in Indian cinema wouldn’t happen.
The whole of Devdas is about drinking, so the entire film will be banned. There’ll be no SRK screaming “Objection Overruled!” in a drunken state. There’ll be no bromance between Dev and Chunni Babu, because well, their relationship was built on alcohol.
Even though the film title is about the prohibition of smoking, John Abraham is seen sporting the cancer stick in a majority of scenes. Anurag Kashyap had a problem when the ticker was introduced, we shudder to think the rage he must be feeling now.
Well, a pivotal scene (and a famous one) where Dharmendra (Veeru) threatens to jump from a height, if Hema Malini (Basanti) refuses to hold his hand, will be cancelled. Then there is the dancing on the glass scene (from broken wine bottles), which will also be canned.
Amar Akbar Anthony
There’s a wonderful scene in Amar Akbar Anthony where Amitabh Bachchan is so drunk that he talks to himself in the mirror. It’s a hilarious scene, but unfortunately, it does not comply with Nihalani’s taste. Then there’s a church which is a holy communion where there is consumption of wine, so maybe that scene is also a problem for Pahlaj Nihalani.
Every Keshto Mukherjee Film
Every film that has Keshto Mukherjee will not pass through Nihalani’s strict rules, because he has made a living out of playing a comic drunk. He would not have a job.
PS: Johnnie Walker would just be banned, because his name would have to be blurred out every single time according to the rule.