Opposition voice being muzzled, says Mamata
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday reacted sharply to the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) asking filmmaker Suman Ghosh to "mute" four words and phrases, including 'cow' and 'Gujarat', in his documentary on Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen.
"Every single voice of the opposition is being muzzled. Now, Dr Amartya Sen (sic)," she wrote on her Twitter handle.
"If somebody of his (Sen) stature cannot express himself freely, what hope does the common citizen have," the Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo wrote on the microblogging website.
In the documentary, 'The Argumentative Indian', Sen speaks of social choice theory, development economics, philosophy and the rise of right-wing nationalism across the world, including in India.
Ghosh's documentary has been made over a span of 15 years (2002-2017) and is structured as a conversation between Sen and his student, economist Kaushik Basu.
The Chief Minister has been attacking the Centre for its vendetta politics as central agencies including Central Bureau of Investigation, Enforcement Directorate and Income Tax were being unleashed against those had raised their voice against the "anti-people" steps of the Centre.
Sen refused to comment in this connection saying: "I am the subject of the documentary. So I feel that I must not say anything in this connection."
The intellectuals from the city have come down heavily on the film certification board for such a move.
Poet Sankha Ghosh said: "This is shameful. How come one cannot express his feeling in our country".
Veteran actor Soumitra Chatterjee said: "This is nothing apart from foolishness. If such a thing happens then we should say that we are staying in a democratic country."
Stating that she had watched the documentary when screened at Nandan III on Monday, former MP Krishna Basu, said: "Terming the move of the CBFC unfortunate would be an understatement. There must be discussions and debate on it."
Author Sirsendu Mukhopadhyay said: "Sen has just narrated the incident. We cannot erase the history like this."
Poet Nabanita Deb Sen said: "Asking to mute the four words means nothing apart from censoring Sen. We never expect such a move and moreover when the speaker is no one else than the Nobel laureate."
Economist Kaushik Basu said that his friends who are at present out of the country were shell-shocked after the CBFC decision.