Vidya Balan in reconstituted Censor Board

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Nihalani, who was appointed in January 2015, would have stepped down next January as part of his three-year-appointment.

According to an official notification by India's Information and Broadcasting Ministry Friday, Nahalani has been replaced before the end of his three year term by well-known lyricist, screenwriter and a veteran advertising executive, Prasoon Joshi, who is now chairman of McCann India.

Speaking to PTI after his appointment, Joshi noted, "Good intent is the best beginning".

Controversy's favorite child Pahlaj Nihlani, infamous among the masses for his censor decisions has been sacked from his position as chairperson of Central Board of Film Certification in India (CBFC). "We are not outsiders and will look at it (films) from fresh angle".

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Vidya Balan is joined on the Censor Board by Gautami Tadimalla, Narendra Kohli, Naresh Chandra Lal and Neil Herbert Nongkynrih among others. Both are openminded and we want to progressively facilitate certification of films for producers in sync with the Cinematograph Act. "With Prasoon Joshi heading it, it was tempting for me to come on board".

A government statement posted late in the night said that Joshi has been appointed Chairperson of Central Board of Film Certification "in an honorary capacity from August 11, 2017 for a period of three years or until further orders, whichever is earlier".

The government also reconstituted the censor board. "I wish him the very best to bring in some sense and do a meaningful job, so that the movie industry and the audience benefit". Recently, Mr Nihalani had refused to certify the acclaimed film Lipstick Under My Burqa. "I'm sure creative artists and filmmakers will benefit".

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