Govt lifts 'ban' on Indian movies

Published: January 31, 2017

ISLAMABAD / LAHORE: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Tuesday gave the thumbs up to the information, broadcasting and heritage ministry to lift the ‘ban’ on screening Indian movies in Pakistan.

According to an official handout issued by the information ministry, the government is “pleased to continue the existing open policy to display all international movies (including Indian films) in Pakistani cinemas”.

The statement, however, pointed out that the cinema houses would be allowed to screen movies only after approval from relevant censor boards.

An official stated that the premier took the decision after being briefed by Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb.

Marriyum, who is also the head of the special committee formed by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif for the clearance of Indian movies to be screened in Pakistan, presented a report as well as suggestions on the issue.

In the meeting it was decided that the ban will be lifted following Ministry of Commerce’s new import order, an official privy to the matter told The Express Tribune.

Earlier the meeting was scheduled on January 30 but could not take place.

Panel to take up Indian movies’ clearance on Monday

Meanwhile, in an official statement issued on January 28, Marriyum said the government had decided to maintain the present policy regarding the import of Indian films after reviewing the benefits Pakistani cinema trade can derive from their exhibition.

If import and certification details are completed on time Kaabil will release in Pakistan on February 3 while Raees will release on February 10.

The release will mark the end of the self-imposed ban on Bollywood films in the country.

Following Uri attacks and ‘surgical strikes’ along the Line of Control, Pakistani cinema owners in September 2016 had decided not to screen Indian movies until tensions between the two countries receded. They took the decision after the Indian Motion Picture Producers’ Association banned all Pakistani artists from working in film projects in India.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 1st, 2017.

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Reader Comments (18)

  • Faz
    Feb 1, 2017 - 4:16AM

    Good decision. We don’t need to be stupid if neighbors are stupid.Recommend

  • Sunil
    Feb 1, 2017 - 5:45AM

    Pakistani cinema can not survive without Indian movies. You can not survive without having India as your enemy. Whole of Pakistan exists on the basis of hate and envy of India. Please publish this and I like to see the remarks. I tell it as it is. Recommend

  • JKhan
    Feb 1, 2017 - 8:31AM

    Which PM? Modi or Nawaz!Recommend

  • whatever
    Feb 1, 2017 - 9:46AM

    If you spit into the Sky, it falls into your Eye. Bollywood rules.Recommend

  • Rana Mohsin
    Feb 1, 2017 - 10:39AM

    The calamities I have seen on border villages by the Indian aggression, I will never go to Cinema to see Indian outcast faces in my rest of life, inshallah. Recommend

    Feb 1, 2017 - 10:54AM

    Follish are those who play politics in Cinema, Art, Entertainment etc., as I receive many Pakistani punjabi comedy wordsap video clips and I really appreciate the talent as our language and culture is same and separated after birth.Recommend

  • Bunny Rabbit
    Feb 1, 2017 - 12:27PM

    welcome move !! why should art suffer if politicians fight ? Pak actors have a huge fan following in India . Indian films have a huge following in Pak . so its both ways . Recommend

  • Bharatiya Australian
    Feb 1, 2017 - 12:53PM

    Pakistan need to learn to choose the battle and enemy wisely, else this type of self imolation and self goal is bound to happen.Recommend

  • Well wisher
    Feb 1, 2017 - 1:28PM


    Even before Pakistan started exhibiting Indian movies, our artists became an integral part of Bollywood specially singers. They have made Bollywood movies a huge success with their talent. So please make this this clear in your mind that both countries artists and industry benefit from each other and that’s how it should be. We speak the same language. We are no small market for Bollywood movies.

    Also, please correct your reality, no one in Pakistan gets votes with a hate speech about India, however it works in India very well. Your politician solely survive on this agenda. So stop selling hatred and we both need to be genuine in our attitudes towards each other.

    Let art build the bridges even if it is on the basis of economics for both sides. Please grow up.Recommend

  • Kaps
    Feb 1, 2017 - 1:54PM

    It is more of Financial decision for growth\Survival of Pakistan Cinema
    Money comes first as always Recommend

  • Atticus from India
    Feb 1, 2017 - 2:22PM

    I am not clear why are Pakistanis so defensive about their decision reversal. And also why are my fellow Indians feeling so excited.
    Movies are just a product in the international market. Pakistani distributors are buying the movies at a price. There is no national pride involved here. Pakistan also buys cotton, onions etc from India.
    As long as they pay a fair price, neither country can assume superiority. It is a simple trade transaction between a buyer and a seller at equal status.Recommend

  • Sunil
    Feb 1, 2017 - 2:40PM

    @Well wisher: Your wishful thinking and illusion. Recommend

  • Nadeem
    Feb 1, 2017 - 3:14PM

    What makes us allow the enemy’s movies. What has India done in Pakistan’s favor?Recommend

  • Farru
    Feb 1, 2017 - 5:06PM

    Very good decision. Those who doesn’t want to see Indian films, can see Saudi films. No worries!Recommend

  • vijay ramesh
    Feb 2, 2017 - 6:20PM

    @Bunny Rabbit:
    Neighboring Artist cannot sing and dance in Bollywood when terrorists trained by Neighbor countrycreates havoc in India. People in India are too self respecting and self made and don’t need their neighbor even 1% for survival. Recommend

  • Azam Khan
    Feb 2, 2017 - 9:30PM

    Are’nt you proving to be stupid by allowing Indian movies to be screened in Pakistan.Recommend

  • Azam Khan
    Feb 2, 2017 - 10:01PM

    @Bunny Rabbit:
    Double standards, why should sports suffer because of Indian arrogance.Recommend

  • vijay ramesh
    Feb 4, 2017 - 8:20PM

    @Well wisher:
    Actually your Govt should recognize Kashmir as part of India and the full equation between both countries will change. The terrorists and their camps and their leaders will be jobless and there will be peace for all. Will Pakistan do that??Recommend

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