Report: First film under Prasoon Joshi denied certificate
Only days after taking over as the Chairman of Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC), Prasoon Joshi banned the first film that came for certification under his leadership. The new CBFC board refused to give certification to Punjabi film "Toofan Singh" with popular singer Ranjit Bawa in the lead. The movie, which has been released internationally, was banned on the grounds on "excessive violence".
An anonymous CBFC member's statement
"Toofan Singh is a terrorist, who goes on a rampage killing corrupt cops and politicians. And they've compared him to Bhagat Singh. The film is brutal and anarchic. We couldn't empathize with its message of brute power, let alone grant it a censor certificate."
Story of an outlaw revolting against corruption
The Baghal Singh directorial, Toofan Singh, reportedly depicts the story of a vigilante, played by Ranjit Bawa, who embraces terrorist tactics to fight against corruption. It is based on the life of the 1980s Khalistani militant, Jugraj Singh 'Toofan', who was killed at the age of 19. The movie highlights Toofan's "Robin Hood deeds" and his role in the Sikh separatist movement.
Toofan Singh's future in India in dire straits
The Censor Board, under Pahlaj Nihalani, refused to pass Toofan Singh last year saying it glorified "anti-national elements and the Khalistan movement." Toofan Singh's team then approached Nihalani and the revising committee, but in vain; the filmmakers decided to move the Information and Broadcasting Ministry's tribunal. However, the Joshi-led new CBFC board, including Vidya Balan, also denied certification to the film.