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Pakistan should follow Bangladesh-ban Indian movies


The obsequious and compliant Awami League government in Dhaka has had to reverse itself after popular protests forced it to continue the ban on Indian movies.

Though this reversal happened under the fig leaf of saving Dhallywood, there are indications that the move was done because of the widespread anti-Indian feelings in Bangladesh. The Awami League is already under a lot of pressure because of the trial of some of the powerful members of the Jamaat e Islami Bangladesh.

While Bengalis enjoy Indian movies–they don’t want to increase Bharati (aka Indian) commercial interests in Bangladesh.

DHAKA : Hours after Bangladesh’s film producers, directors, actors and actresses came to the streets in Dhaka on Monday in protest, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday asked the Commerce Ministry to repeal its earlier decision to withdraw a ban on import and display of Indian films in the country’s cinema halls.

A cabinet minister revealed it to newsmen seeking anonymity, emerging from a cabinet meeting at the Cabinet Division of the Bangladesh Secretariat. The Prime Minister also expressed her dissatisfaction over the decision regarding to the ban slapped by her father Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in 1972.

The commerce ministry recently lifted the embargo in a bid to inject a momentum into the country’s waning cinema industry.

Earlier, producers, directors and actors on Monday demonstrated in the capital to protest against a government decision to allow screening of Indian films in cinema halls.

Reviewing an import policy, the government allowed import of films from India and other South Asian countries. The decision has not been made effective yet. But the industry people say Bangladesh’s already-ailing film industry, popularly dubbed as Dhallywood, will be devastated if the decision comes into effect.

The ban on import and display of Indian films in the country’s cinema halls was imposed in 1972.

Bangladesh Chalachchitra Oikya Parishad, a platform of the local film industry, organised the protest on the premises of the Film Development Corporation (FDC).

Popular actors including Razzak, Anwara and Mizu Ahmed took part. They said the government had taken this decision without any consultation with the industry insiders. They hoped the government would not take any decision that could destroy Bangladesh’s own film industry.

Details

Hundreds of Bangladeshi film producers, directors, actors and actresses Monday came down to the premises of the Film Development Corporation in Dhaka, held demonstrations and vowed to resist exhibition of Indian movies across the country.

The Bangladesh Chalachitra Oikya Parisad, a combine of film related organisations, staged the demonstration protesting the government’s decision to lift ban on import of Indian films.

Eleven-film related organisations including Bangladesh Film Producers and Distributors Association, Bangladesh Film Directors’ Association, Film Artistes Association, Bangladesh Film Editors’ Guild, Bangladesh Cinematographers’ Association, Bangladesh Film Dancers Association, Cine-Directorial Associates of Bangladesh participated in the demonstration under the newly formed Chalachitra Oikya Parisad.

The Parishad leaders later submitted a memorandum to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina after the demonstration.

The Bangladesh Film Directors’ Association president, Shawkat Jamil, said, “We want to know whether the Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina, is aware of the decision,” said Jamil. “How this decision was taken when the country’s founder president Sheikh Mujibur Rahman imposed ban on import of films of the Indian sub-continent in 1972”, Jamil added.

Terming the move a conspiracy, Chalachitra Oikya Parisad convenor Mizu Ahmed said, “This decision will create an unequal competition in Bangladesh’s film industry as the budget of Indian films is much bigger than that of us”.

“The cinema owners are behind the conspiracy and they have provided the government with wrong information that the number of films released annually from the FDC is too small”, Mizu, also president of Film Artistes Association.

Film director Chashi Nazrul Islam said lifting of ban on import of Indian films will be suicidal for the Bengali culture.

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  1. 1971
    May 3, 2010 at 4:38 pm

    Ha…… wonders of islam …. false pride & inferiority complex explicitly visible in slaves

  2. neel123
    May 4, 2010 at 4:33 am

    Now Farida Khanum wants to get a chance to sing in Bollywood films …. !!

    Indian cinema and TV are an integral part of most of the Pakistanis. The same is true in Bangladesh too … !!

    Ban or no ban, people will watch it by any means …. !!

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