Sanjay Leela Bhansali always promotes Indian Culture, says Pahlaj Nihalani

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Even though Padmavati is receiving flak from many quarters, it seems like Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) chiefs, both past, and present, are together in giving the film its due. The CBFC chief Prasoon Joshi said on Friday that the board has respect for Sanjay Leela Bhansali as an “individual and artist”, following the former incumbent Pahlaj Nihalani has called the ace filmmaker a “sensible person”.

While speaking to ANI about the ongoing controversy regarding Padmavati, Nihalani said, “Bhansali is a sensible and best technician in the industry. He knows that he is bringing Indian culture in front of the world. He has always promoted Indian culture and people have liked it.” The ex-CBFC chief said that every film of Bhansali faces controversy even though it has nothing objectionable to deliver. “There has been controversy in each of his films. Controversy on his projects is created by people. His movies have always done a good business after people see there is nothing wrong with it,” the film director said.

“People of every state for which he makes a film protest against it. People protested against Bajirao Mastani in Maharashtra. There were many court cases. I think how he highlighted Maratha in that film was commendable,” Nihalani added. He also emphasized on the fact that there was a film made on Padmavati in 1963 but there were no protests. Nihalani stressed that “Why did people not protest earlier when movies were made on Padmavati? Were the Rajputs not this concerned? These protests must stop”. The film director pointed out that the approval of any film is the responsibility of censor board, not public or government.

Nihalani added that “Till the time film is not censored, it is not completed. I think they have not yet submitted it for approval, the process which takes at least 21 days. If the film gets censor certificate, it must be right-minded”. The ex-CBFC chief stressed that “Members of censor board are capable and educated. They know which film should be passed and which should not. It is the responsibility of the censor board not should the government or public take it”. This period drama starring Shahid Kapoor, Deepika Padukone, and Ranveer Singh has been facing protests from many communal groups, including Shree Rajput Karni Sena, for allegedly interfering with the historical facts.

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