MUMBAI: India has removed the chief executive of its film censorship board after he was arrested on accusations he took a bribe to clear a movie for screening.
Rakesh Kumar was arrested on Monday in Mumbai, the centre of the Bollywood movie industry, on charges of taking Rs70,000 ($1,155) to provide Central Broad of Film Certification clearance for a film.
"He (Kumar)has been removed from his charge," an official from the Information and Broadcasting Ministry, which overseas the censorship board, told AFP Wednesday on condition of anonymity.
India's new Prime Minister Narendra Modi ran on a platform of zero-tolerance of corruption and has repeatedly pledged to curb the graft and red tape that have plagued state organisations for decades.
Kumar took over as the board's chief executive earlier this year. Soon afterwards he told the Mumbai Mirror newspaper there was a "huge backlog of films that needs to be cleared as we are short-staffed".
The resulting delays to a cinema release carry a potentially huge revenue loss for India's rapidly expanding multi-billion-dollar movie industry.
Kumar will appear in court in Mumbai on Thursday. Two other people connected to the censorship board have also been arrested and will appear in court on Wednesday.
Stringent guidelines drawn up by India's censor board include warnings placed on film scenes deemed to glamorise smoking, while shots depicting extreme violence are banned.