Kochi: The director of the low-budget film 'Irattajeevitham' (Double life) has alleged that the regional officer of the Central Board Film Certification (CBFC) in Thiruvananthapuram had forced him to drop the voice overlap mentioning Vijay Mallya, the absconding liquor baron, in the film. It is the first directorial venture of Suresh Narayanan, made on a shoestring budget of less than Rs 40 lakh. He said he had no option other than dropping the sequence as the regional officer insisted on it for issuing the certification before December 31.
"I am at a loss to understand why the official insisted on removing the voice overlap. In the film the said sequence has been conceived as a voice overlap heard from a television news channel and there was nothing controversial about it", he said. The news about SBI writing off Rs 17,500 crore of NPA of prominent persons was splashed across all major media outlets in the state on November 16, 2016. Out of this, Rs 3,000 crore belonged to Mallya.
The film was submitted for censor certificate in October and a four-member censor committee which watched the film said it would be issued U certificate without any suggestion of cuts. The regional official, however, suggested the removal of Mallya sequence. "Although I have questioned the reason for the suggestion, the official insisted on it and we were forced to make several trips from Thrissur to Thiruvananthapuram in November and December. Finally, I had no option other than agreeing to the suggestion as I needed the certification in 2017 to avoid major financial losses," he said.
According to Narayanan, the film deals with the complex situation of a transgender person, negotiating the life and interacting with society and the how the public consciousness addresses the situation. Describing the treatment meted out to independent film makers by the censor board officialdom as outrageous, Narayanan said his film will be released soon.