Pakistanis condemn ban on Mahira-SRK blockbuster Raees

Published: February 8, 2017
Fans dismissed the concerns, with many arguing that art can be about politics but politics should have no place in art.

Fans dismissed the concerns, with many arguing that art can be about politics but politics should have no place in art.

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s ban on Mahira-SRK starrer Raees has sparked a social media backlash after the film was denounced for portraying Muslims as ‘terrorists’.

The government decision to bar the 2017 action film came after Pakistani cinemas lifted their own ban on Indian films.

Bollywood movies and Shah Rukh Khan in particular are immensely popular in Pakistan and the film also stars Pakistan’s leading actress, Mahira Khan.

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But the industry has become a political battleground amid heightened tensions between the nuclear-armed states in the disputed Kashmir region.

The film “portrays Muslims as terrorists and violent people”, Mubahsar Hassan, chairman of the Pakistan Film Censor Board, told AFP. 

A second official complained about the comparison between Muslims and Hindus. “This film gave a message that all Muslims do bad things and are involved in crimes while Hindus are gentlemen and they stop them from the dirty work,” he told AFP on condition of anonymity.

But fans dismissed the concerns, with many arguing that art can be about politics but politics should have no place in art:

Pakistani cinemas last October announced a ban on Indian films following strained relations between Islamabad and Delhi, lifting it only last month.

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For its part, the Indian Motion Pictures Producers Association banned Pakistani actors and technicians from working on Bollywood sets after last year’s tensions.

India and Pakistan have fought three wars since independence from Britain seven decades ago, two of them over Kashmir.

The Pakistani censor board officials said other Bollywood films such as “Kabil” and “Ae Dil hai Mushkil” can still be shown as they do not contain objectionable content.

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Reader Comments (9)

  • MAK
    Feb 8, 2017 - 5:54PM

    Good Decision to ban this Movie, Pakistan should ban all Indian movies and promote their own and specifically these kind of movies with full of negative image for Pakistan(country) or Islam(religion) Must be banned.Recommend

  • shad muhammad
    Feb 8, 2017 - 6:50PM

    if we thinking like India than what the difference between us. Recommend

  • Farooq Khan
    Feb 8, 2017 - 7:21PM

    Looks really bad to ban an Indian block buster with our star heroine Recommend

  • Taqi
    Feb 8, 2017 - 8:29PM

    Good job censor board!Recommend

  • R L Ramakrishnan
    Feb 8, 2017 - 9:47PM

    I speak from India. I must say one thing – Mahira is one stunning, vivacious looking lady. She played her role to perfection. I look forward to her acting in many more Bollywood movies.Recommend

  • ShamelessPakistanis
    Feb 8, 2017 - 10:34PM

    Sorry the title is wrong.

    some liberal Pakistanis condemned. the majority are ohk with the ban on any indian content.Recommend

  • Asi
    Feb 9, 2017 - 6:57AM

    Really sorry to hear this it should not banRecommend

  • Sarah
    Feb 9, 2017 - 12:22PM

    You’d be surprised to know that a significant majority supports the ban.Recommend

  • M Nasir Iqbal
    Feb 9, 2017 - 12:32PM

    It is really good job. We should ban all such movies which reflects bad aspects on our religion. And arouse conflicts between human beings on the bases of religion.Recommend

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