Grant ‘Lipstick Under My Burkha’ an A Certificate: FCAT to CBFC

CBFC had refused certification to ‘Lipstick Under My Burkha’ saying it showed women in a bad light.

2 min read
A poster of <i>Lipstick Under My Burkha. </i>(Photo courtesy: Facebook)

The Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT) has directed the Censor Board to grant an 'A' certificate to the film Lipstick Under My Burkha, which was earlier refused certification by the Board.

The FCAT has directed that the film be granted certification with "voluntary and some additional cuts and deletions" while observing that the cuss words and intimate scenes shown in the film were integral to the storyline.


It, however, directed the makers of the film to mute a couple of Hindi words, including those referring to prostitutes, from a couple of scenes.

The Central Board of Film Certification's (CBFC) Examining and Revising Committee had refused certification to the film saying "women in the film are shown in bad light, particularly targeting women of certain community which might hurt sentiments."

Following the CBFC's decision, the film's director Alankrita Srivastava and producer Prakash Jha had filed an appeal in the FCAT.

The makers have maintained that the film revolves around the lives of four women seeking freedom for their desires, dreams and aspirations through small acts of courage and stealthy rebellion against patriarchy.

The FCAT, headed by former Delhi Lokayukta Justice Manmohan Sarin, observed that the CBFC "misdirected themselves in denying certification" to the women-oriented film.

The Examining and Revising Committee of the CBFC have misdirected themselves in denying certification on the ground that the story of the film is women-oriented. There cannot be any embargo on a women-oriented film or one containing sexual fantasies and expression of the inner desires of women.
Statement by the Tribunal

The makers of the film had offered to make some cuts in the film.

However, the FCAT suggested a few deletions in the intimate scenes "without affecting in any manner the projection and substance of the scene or in any manner affecting the basic film."

Lipstick Under My Burkha has won the Spirit of Asia Award at the Tokyo International Film Festival and the Oxfam Award for Best Film on Gender Equality at the Mumbai Film Festival. It features Konkona Sen Sharma, Ratna Pathak, Aahana Kumra and Plabita Borthakur.

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