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CBFC agrees to certify Amartya Sen documentary if 'Gujarat' word is dropped

The director, however, has not taken any decision on whether he would go ahead with the word in the film and release the film online or drop it.

Kaushik Basu, Suman Ghosh, Amartya Sen


Filmmaker Suman Ghosh whose documentary on Nobel laureate Amartya Sen was previously red flagged by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) under former chief Pahlaj Nihalani, on Friday said the board, now under Prasoon Joshi, has allowed the film to be released without any modification to the previously objected words, except a reference to "Gujarat".

The Argumentative Indian, originally scheduled for a 14 July release, was refused the green signal by the Indian censor board over the use of the words "cow", "Gujarat", "Hindu India" and "Hindutva", by Sen in the film.

"I have received the letter from the CBFC today. The board has removed the cuts it previously wanted except the word Gujarat. I also had a very positive conversation with CBFC chairman Prasoon Joshi," Ghosh told IANS.

The director who previously refused to abide by the censor board's suggestion to mute those four words in the film and hinted he might release the film online, said he has not taken any decision on whether he would go ahead with the word in the film or drop it.

"I have just received the letter today. So nothing has been decided yet. I will shortly take a decision on the film's release," he added.

The hour-long documentary, structured as a free flowing conversation between Sen and his student and Cornell economics professor Kaushik Basu, is shot in two parts in 2002 and 2017. Sen is seen talking about the social choice theory, development economics, philosophy and the rise of right-wing nationalism across the world, including India.

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