NEW DELHI: While a controversy rages over “Padmavati”, the Central Board of Film Certification has returned filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s application citing “technical deficiencies” in it, likely delaying its release.
Sources in the board told TOI the application was sent back to the filmmakers through an online process on November 16. The film’s December 1 release, sources said, is expected to be delayed as a result.
CBFC sources also confirmed that the board has not as yet reviewed the film. A source close to the decision said, “It will be incorrect to say that the film has been rejected. The CBFC has only sent Padmavati’s application back to the filmmakers because of certain technical deficiencies in the form. Once the filmmaker returns the completed application, the film will be reviewed as per the rules.”
The board is allowed 68 days from the date of receiving an application to grant a certificate. CBFC first reviews the application, then allots a date to review the film’s content, and then suggests changes, or grants a certificate in one of the four categories. Alternatively, CBFC may also refuse certification to a film.
In case of ‘Padmavati’, the producers would have had to submit Form I, an application for certification for public exhibition of a film produced in India. What is likely to have been a sticking point is part 7(a) of the form, which asks filmmakers to “specify whether the film is based on fiction or true incident or true story or mythology or epic or devotional or biographical and if so the source from which it has been made may be mentioned (sic)”.
Once the CBFC is satisfied with the declarations made by a film’s producer, the board grants a date on which the contents of the film are examined by the board. Official sources said CBFC follows a strict chronological order to approve films and that ‘Padmavati’ will not be allowed to “jump the queue” to seek the board’s approval and the grant of a certificate.