CBFC Full Form

The Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC), commonly known as the Censor Board, is an important body that handles film certification in India. CBFC is often in the news due to censorship issues. In this article, you can read about CBFC, Cinematograph Act and Film Certification Appellate Tribunal for IAS exam.

CBFC handles the work of film certification in India. 

It is a statutory body under the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. 

It regulates the public exhibition of films under the provisions of the Cinematograph Act 1952. 

Films can be screened to the public only after they are certified by the CBFC.

The Central Government enacted the Information Technology (Guidelines for Intermediaries and Digital Media Code of Conduct) Rules, 2021 in February 2021. The rules largely cover OTT platforms and social media. The new rules have been passed under sections 69A(2), 79(2)(c) and 87 of the Information Technology Act, 2000. These new rules replace the already enacted Information Technology (Intermediate Guidelines) Rules, 2011. Read about the new Digital Content Rules 2021 on the page linked here.

How does a Film get Certificates in India?

The certification is given by CBFC which is located in nine regional offices in India, Mumbai being the major regional office. The film has to apply for clearance to the regional office and then, an inquiry committee looks into the film to give the relevant clearance. In case the applicant is not satisfied with the approval, he/she can approach the CBFC's Headquarters in Mumbai. If the applicant is also not satisfied with the order of the Head Office, an appeal can be made to the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal at New Delhi.

Film Certification in India

U – unrestricted 

UA – unrestricted but with a parental discretion advisory for children under 12 years 

A – adult 

S – only for a special class of persons

Film certification is often in news because of the tussle between the censor board and the filmmakers. While filmmakers want complete freedom while making and showing films to the audience, the board sees it as their duty to recommend suitable edits and cuts in films and make them suitable for viewing for the public.

CBFC Vision

"To ensure good and healthy entertainment in accordance with the provisions of the Cinematograph Act 1952 and the Cinematograph (Certification) Rules, 1983."

CBFC Mission

  • Ensuring healthy recreation, entertainment and education for the public. 
  • To make the process of certification more transparent and responsible. 
  • To create awareness among the advisory panel members, media and filmmakers about the guidelines for certification and the current trend in films through meetings and workshops.
  • Adoption of modern technology for certification process through computerization and technology infrastructure.
  • To maintain transparency about the activities of CBFCs through voluntary disclosure, response to RTI queries, implementation of e-governance and publication of annual reports. To develop CBFC as a Center of Excellence.