Tamil actor Vishal alleges corruption in CBFC's Mumbai office, I&B Ministry orders probe
Vishal had levelled the allegations of corruption in the Mumbai office of CBFC, saying that he had to pay Rs 6.5 lakh for the screening and certification of "Mark Antony."
NEW DELHI: The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting on Friday ordered an inquiry in the Mumbai office of CBFC after Tamil actor Vishal alleged that he had to pay money to receive a certificate for the Hindi release of his movie "Mark Antony".
Vishal had levelled the allegations of corruption in the Mumbai office of CBFC in a post on microblogging site X on Thursday, saying that he had to pay Rs 6.5 lakh for the screening and certification of "Mark Antony."
"The issue of corruption in CBFC brought forth by actor @VishalKOfficial is extremely unfortunate. The government has zero tolerance for corruption and the strictest action will be taken against anyone found involved. A senior officer from the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting has been deputed to Mumbai to conduct an inquiry today itself," the I&B ministry tweeted on Friday.
The ministry also urged people to cooperate and share information about "any other instance of harassment by CBFC."
#Corruption being shown on silver screen is fine. But not in real life. Cant digest. Especially in govt offices. And even worse happening in #CBFC Mumbai office. Had to pay 6.5 lacs for my film #MarkAntonyHindi version. 2 transactions. 3 Lakhs for screening and 3.5 Lakhs for… pic.twitter.com/3pc2RzKF6l— Vishal (@VishalKOfficial) September 28, 2023
Official sources said Minister of Information and Broadcasting Anurag Thakur has directed maximising the use of technology to ensure transparency in slotting and implementation of faceless systems wherever possible.
Vishal's sci-fi film "Mark Antony", directed by Adhik Ravichandran, was released in Hindi on Thursday. The movie also features S J Suryah, Ritu Varma, Sunil, Selvaraghavan and Abhinaya.
In his post on X on Thursday evening, Vishal made an appeal to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde to investigate the "scam" that transpired at the CBFC's Mumbai office.
"Due to some technical issues, we applied for the Hindi censor certificate online at the last minute. But we were taken aback by what happened at the CBFC office in Mumbai," Vishal claimed.
"On Monday, when my person visited the office, there was an option given to us -- to pay Rs 6.5 lakh for the certification the same day. We were left with no other option. We were asked to pay Rs 3 lakhs first, just for the screening. The rest Rs 3.5 lakh were for the certificate," the actor added.
Vishal also claimed that a woman official told their team that it was a common practice at the CBFC where filmmakers would pay money to receive censor clearance.
"Those who want the certificate in 15 days, they have to pay Rs 4 lakh. We had no other option, so we paid the money in two instalments and I got the certificate. Today, my film was released in north India. But this is very saddening. If this is the case in government offices, I really request higher authorities to look into this matter," the actor had claimed.