The Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, on Friday cancelled the screening of Siddharth Chauhan-directed film, Pashi, over “nudity” and “explicit” content. The movie was scheduled to be screened at the institute’s film festival on Saturday.
Chauhan, a Shimla-based filmmaker, alleged that the premier institute cancelled the film’s screening without informing him.
“They feel that my film will make the audience (students and faculty) feel uncomfortable. I don’t get it. The only reason I agreed to screen the film was because it was a film festival, and I believe a ‘film festival’ is supposed to celebrate individual voices and independent cinema,” Chauhan wrote in a Facebook post.
Pashi is a movie that explores homoerotic theme. “Why are you organising a film festival if you are not open to content? They were the ones chasing me to screen my film,” Chauhan told The Indian Express.
The film was earlier screened at Delhi University and the Kala Ghoda film festival.
When contacted, one of the convenors of the IIT-B film festival told The Indian Express, “Our festival is attended by children and parents. Hence, we cannot showcase movies with explicit scenes. However, we have promised a special screening of Chauhan’s film wherein we will ensure that the audience is above 18 years of age.”
The convenor said screening of Counterfeit Kunkoo, a movie by Reema Sengupta, which also has an “explicit” scene, was cancelled midway by the organisers during a pre-film festival screening on Friday.