Saturday, November 21, 2015

Shabana Azmi takes a jibe at Censor Board chief Pahlaj Nihalani

The recent remark by eminent actress Shabana Azmi alleging that the kiss scene trimmed in the recent James Bond movie SPECTRE is arbitrary has once again raised the question about the competency of censor board members. 

Shabana Azmi made this remake during the ongoing ‘Women In The World’ summit when she was asked to comment about the status of censorship in India.

Taking a jibe at the Censor Board chief Pahlaj Nihalani, Shabana Azim said, “Our very honourable chief of the board of film certification has recently ordered an arbitrary cut in the length of a kiss scene in James Bond film SPECTRE from its actual length to half its length, without consultation of the members.”

Mocking at the decision Shabana said, “Pahlaj Nihalani thinks 50 seconds is enough to watch a kissing scene. I don’t understand? What is the right length? If you have objection with a particular scene, simple delete it. What is the logic in showing the half baked scene?” 

Recalling her bold film FIRE, which portrayed lesbian love relation and had a passionate kiss between her and Nandita Das she said, “Despite a bold subject of love relation between same sexes my film FIRE was released with a single cut because censor board in those days understood the nuance of the scene and they just did not arbitrarily trimmed the movie.” 

Besides Shabana Azmi, there is a strong dissent against Censor Board chief Pahlaj Nihalani and his post seems threatened!

Music legend Ilaiyaraaja uses IFFI’s platform to urge government to make music compulsory in schools!

maestro Ilaiyaraaja, who was conferred the 'Centenary Award for Indian Personality of the Year' for his outstanding contribution to the music industry at the opening ceremony of the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Goa on Friday in his humble request has urged the government to make ‘Music’ as a compulsory subject both in schools and colleges. 

While receiving the award from the hands of Information and Broadcasting Minister Arun Jaitley and Bollywood actor Anil Kapoor, a simple down to earth, Ilaiyaraaja on the occasion said, “I know it is not the right place to ask something. But I still want to go ahead and ask the government to do something. I want them to make music compulsory in schools and colleges."

It may be noted that this not the first time when Ilaiyaraaja has opened his heart about making Music compulsory in schools, he has been advocating this since past many years because he believes the simple and easy solution to the growing religious intolerance and violence and terrorism is Music. 

In an interview he had once said, “Music alone has the power to bring down violence. It discourages the wandering mind and helps in focusing one’s thoughts.” 

Ilaiyaraaja plea reminds me of the great Maestro Ali Akbar Khan, who was a Master of playing Sarod and admired as ‘National Living Treasure’ in India.

In an interview he had said, “My father learned from a great teacher, and we always keep the traditional thing – from father to son, son to grandson, teacher to student – like that. What my father learned, I don’t want that to die. It must spread all over the world!" 

Like Maestro Ali Akbar Khan, Music Maestro Ilaiyaraaja, who has acquired immense knowledge does not wish his treasure of music to die with him hence he has rightly made an appeal to the government to make Music a part of the curriculum in school and colleges so that like the literary genius like William Shakespeare, Munshi Premchand etc Music also becomes immortal and musical stalwarts like Naushad, Pandith Ravi Shanker, etc and their precious musical knowledge be explored by the coming generations!