8 Indian Movies That Got Banned By The Censor Board

Bandit Queen (1994) …
Bandit Queen is a 1994 Indian biographical film based on the life of Phoolan Devi as covered in the book India’s Bandit Queen: The True Story of Phoolan Devi by the Indian author Mala Sen.[1] It was directed by Shekhar Kapur and starred Seema Biswas as the title character. The music was composed by Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. The film won the National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi, Filmfare Critics Award for Best Movie and Best Direction for that year. The film was premiered in the Directors’ Fortnight section of the 1994 Cannes Film Festival, and was screened at the Edinburgh Film Festival.[2][3] The film was selected as the Indian entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 67th Academy Awards, but was not accepted as a nominee

Fire (1996) …

Fire (Hindi: Phāyar फायर) is a 1996 Indian-Canadian romantic drama film written and directed by Deepa Mehta, and starring Shabana Azmi and Nandita Das. It is the first installment of Mehta’s Elements trilogy; it is succeeded by Earth (1998) and Water (2005).

The film is loosely based on Ismat Chughtai’s 1942 story, Lihaaf (The Quilt).[3] It was one of the first mainstream Bollywood films to explicitly show homosexual relations. After its 1998 release in India, certain groups staged several protests, setting off a flurry of public dialogue around issues such as homosexuality and freedom of speech.

Kama Sutra – A Tale Of Love (1996) …

Kama Sutra: A Tale of Love is a 1996 Indian English-language historical romance film co-written, co-produced, and directed by Mira Nair. It takes its title from the ancient Indian text, the Kama Sutra and serves as a common link between the characters. The film stars Rekha, Indira Varma, and Naveen Andrews in pivotal roles.[1]

The plot takes its origin from a short story by Urdu author Wajida Tabassum titled “Utran” (“Hand-Me-Downs” or “Cast-Offs”). The portion of plot derived from “Utran” takes place from the film’s beginning until the scene where Maya says: “Now something I have used is yours forever.” After that the story is the screenwriter’s creation.[2] Declan Quinn won the 1998 Independent Spirit Award for Best Cinematography for his work in the film.[3] Kama Sutra was nominated for the Golden Seashell award at the 1996 San Sebastián International Film Festival and was screened at the Cannes Film Festival

Urf Professor (2000) …

The Pink Mirror (2003) …
The Pink Mirror, the Indian release title Gulabi Aaina is an award-winning Indian film drama produced and directed by Sridhar Rangayan. Said to be the first Indian film to comprehensively focus on Indian transsexuals with the entire story revolving around two transsexuals and a gay teenager’s attempts to seduce a man – Samir (Rufy Baqal). The film explores the taboo subject of transsexuals in India which is still much misundersood and ridiculed.

In 2003, the Central Board of Film Certification, the Indian Censor Board banned Rangayan’s film on Indian transsexuals. The censor board cited that the film was ‘vulgar and offensive’. The filmmaker appealed twice again unsuccessfully. The film still remains banned in India, but has screened at numerous festivals all over the world and won awards. The critics have applauded it for its ‘sensitive and touching portrayal of marginalized community’.[1][2][3]

India’s foremost gay activist Ashok Row Kavi says, in his review, “The wonder is that it was not made before. The reality is that it is here now”. India’s leading newspaper, the Indian Express termed it – ‘This is more than just the “peeping into the closet” that Rangayan intended. It’s almost throwing the doors wide open for the world to look in!’

The film has received tremendous support and critical acclaim from reviewers, festival directors and global audiences. It has screened at more than 70 international film festivals and won couple of awards. The film is also used as part of University archives / libraries as resource material in academic courses such as Gender, Nation and the World; Activist Voices in India; Gender and Film course.

Paanch (2003) …

Paanch (English: Five) is an Indian crime thriller film written and directed by Anurag Kashyap and starring Kay Kay Menon, Aditya Srivastava, Vijay Maurya, Joy Fernandes and Tejaswini Kolhapure. The film is “loosely” based on the 1976-77 Joshi-Abhyankar serial murders in Pune.[1]

The film never got a theatrical or home-video release. The Central Board of Film Certification objected to the film’s violence, the depiction of drug abuse and bad language. After some cuts, the film was cleared in 2001. However, it could not be released as the producer faced some problems.[2] The film was later released in several film festivals.

Black Friday (2004) …
Black Friday is a 2004 Indian crime drama film written and directed by Anurag Kashyap based on Black Friday – The True Story of the Bombay Bomb Blasts, a book by Hussain Zaidi about the 1993 Bombay bombings.[2][3] The film’s creative consultant, Chandramohan Puppala, attempted to recreate those events and the intense feelings that followed them. It won the Grand Jury Prize at the Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles and was a nominee for the Best Film (Golden Leopard) award at the Locarno International Film Festival. The film was so controversial that the Indian Censor Board did not allow it to be released in India for three years and was finally released on 9 February 2007 after Supreme Court of India allowed it following the verdict in the ’93 Bombay blast case was delivered by TADA cour

Parzania (2005)

Parzania (translation: Heaven and hell on earth[2]) is a 2007 Indian drama film co-written and directed by Rahul Dholakia; David N. Donihue is the other co-writer. The film featured Naseeruddin Shah and Sarika in the lead roles, while Corin Nemec and Raj Zutshi played supporting roles. Made on a budget of US$700,000, the film was shot in Ahmedabad and Hyderabad.

The film is inspired by the true story of a ten-year-old Parsi boy, Azhar Mody, played in the film as Parzaan Pithawala in the film, who disappeared after the 28 February 2002 Gulbarg Society massacre during which 69 people were killed and which was one of many events in the communal riots in Gujarat in 2002.[3] The film traces the journey of the Pithawala family while trying to locate their missing son.

The film was premiered at 36th India International Film Festival in Goa on 26 November 2005, before being released nationwide on 26 January 2007