Is this a story of vengeance – All the circumstances point to the suspicion that the Central Board for Film Certification (CBFC) has taken revenge by (apparently) leaking the ‘Censor Print’ of the Hindi movie “Udta Punjab” (IMDB). The CBFC says no but I don’t think even a two year old will believe their story, until proven otherwise (CBFC claiming innocence)
Hell hath no fury than a Babu scorned!
The messy events leading to this highly despicable action makes me feel very strongly about the apparently total lack of responsibility on the part of every one in CBFC and media who have been making loud noises. None think this is as earth shattering as the earlier events (even the suspect IRCTC hack got more breaking news time). Guys, the leaked movie print is watermarked “For Censor”; it was leaked some time early yesterday and was seeded by 17,000 torrents by midday; the Producer has lost crores. An insider at the CBFC or other Govt department may have stolen, copied and leaked the print!! Crime in government offices by government officers – if you cannot trust your government office who will you trust!
This is my analysis of the controversial activities that have hogged headlines and culminated in this shameful act of apparently intentional data leakage:
Preamble: the movie was ‘censored’ by the CBFC asking for 89 cuts in the movie. The producers went to court which ruled only one cut. The Bombay High Court ruled only one cut was okay…. and asked the CBFC to remain focused on “Certification” and avoid becoming the moral police as a “Censor”. It seems obvious that the CBFC, especially the Chairman (Mr Pahlaj Nihalani) did not like losing the battle and has been using some pretty strong language since while he film industry is asking for his head.
According to media reports, the movie has been shown to the CBFC members and to the Hon’ble High Court. So every single person who has viewed the movie or handled it is suspect.
For me, as an outsider, it is shocking to see this happen and then one falls back and says “what else cane be expected from a Government department”. Now Mr Chairman will make the appropriate statements and constitute a SIT or a Commission to investigate and every single member in the link will assure full cooperation with the investigation.
The Chain of Custody & Viewerscomprises high profile members of the CBFC and judiciary. Will they submit to interrogation and their personal computing devices to forensic examination remains to be seen.
Someone mentioned to me that there are agents involved for submission of the CDs to the CBFC. I think this is the pool where someone will find a “fall guy” and personally it will be difficult to believe. The reasoning is very simple – any ‘agent’ will be an old timer in the industry and there HAS to be a HIGH trust relationship which will be held sacrosanct. If this was the weak link then many films bearing the “for Censor” watermark would have been leaked over the years.
Why ONLY this one? And why NOW!
Sorry Messrs CBFC you are not just suspect; I suspect that you are highly suspect. You have the strongest motive… and of course we all know what happens when egos are pricked – Hell’s fury breaks loose!
Yesterday, when the news broke I found it highly disappointing that the Cyber Police cannot take action without a formal complaint being lodged. In this age, it is funny that you have to wait for the aggrieved person to file a complaint while he is being vandalized and his property is being haped online.
I know there will be many who object to what I am saying but then I have another question for these friends – the LEA spends crores on Internet monitoring systems; the Government and a number of friends-in-govt boast about the power of “NETRA” – so is this money and capability ONLY to follow rumors and terrorist proclamations. What about such crimes which can also be caught the moment people start talking about them with the supposed powerful toys that are available. Or, maybe the monitors have not been trained in this area!
Oh, so much to do and here comes some more. Yes sir, Police modernization is like “a chicken bone stuck in the throat” (हलक मे हड्डी अटकी हुई है) by the powers that be. And it is scary to think that by the time the age old modernization requirements come through the country will be in increasingly tight grip of cybercrime, cyber terrorism and more. Of course we all say it is time to do this, and it is time to do that… but what time will it be time is to be discussed another time.
Now I wait for the Ministry, the CBFC, the High Court, the Police, the Government (Central and State) to come up and say (and do) something strongly.
Oh yes, I also want to shine some light on Google bhaiyya – it is good to provide free internet to my fellow Indian brethren in dusty and hot railway stations across the country. You have volunteered to wifi the worldpro bonoso how come you cannot ‘tweak’ y our search engine to react to such blatant sharing of stolen goods which are now being pirated and users will use you to find their locations. Or Whatsapp, Facebook, or Twitter – I just cannot believe they cannot block messages which carry the links.
And a very good morning to our dear दादाजी “CERT-In” !
सो जाओ सुबह हो गयी है (go to sleep it is daytime)
PS: about the film producers – as a final word, I must also talk about the seemingly lax data security on the part of the film producers. In fact if my knowledge is correct, the film industry is hugely weak in terms of cyber security. I do know that they are seized of reputation management and talk a lot about piracy but if they do not have in-house security how can they even think about protecting their assets from being compromised out on the street or online. High time you guys did something – else the next leak will be from the editing table or from the production floor itself.
Following is some coverage in the news: