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Narrative building and stereotyping of the Truth by Bollywood

  • Ankit Shah | Team PresentMirror | Updated: Oct. 18, 2020, 11:11 a.m.

They say art has no boundaries. They have no responsibility towards the nation. Let the soldiers die at border. From accommodating Pakistani artists to being completely silent on deaths of soldiers, standing with the Tukde gang at JNU and tweeting untruths on Delhi riots to save rioters, there is nothing hidden about what they are doing. And yet they make emotional fools out of public every time.


Believe it or not, every superstar Bollywood has created, created by selling Patriotism in movies at the start. They made billions of money with Lagaan, Main hu na, URI and what not. Did you check their behavior after becoming superstar? They can't put up one tweet for our Martyrs.

Dum Maro Dum part of the song was always the reality of bollywood. But the next line Hare Krishna Hare Ram was the screen jihad of bollywood.

The lyrics aren't just insult to the deities but also making mockery of people that we can take drugs and then we can also become face of the brands working on noble issues like saving people from drug abuse, women and children harassment and that not just fools us, sponsor us but make us believe that we are so noble.

Two of the bollywood Khans married Hindu women while third just beat women. One of them has been changing wife every few years. He talks about social evils at length except for his own religion and personal life. Decades back some oldies blatantly changed to Hindu names to mint money because that audience had gone through the horrible Partition demanded by a religion. By the time Khans got ready, the fresh audience was foolish enough and need to change names wasn’t required anymore.

Stereotyping of Bollywood

You never saw a superstar actress from the Muslim community in the last 3 decades and you never will. And we all know why. Tabu & Dia Mirza, two of them who had some potential got completely sidelined Jia Khan was killed. Zaira Wasim and Sana Khan were forced to go back being a good daddy girl to her religion. You will never see a famous Muslim villain also ever in Bollywood, a villain you could hate, while in other faiths you will get plenty of names. You will only see Khans charming other women in movies.

SSR's link up with Sara Ali Khan is the point when his real boycott started. Ever wondered about the reason of why Saif Ali Khan's sister and Kunal Khemu (hindu) are completely boycotted in bollywood? It is ironical considering that Saif himself married two Hindu women.

Why did PK movie not include social evils like Polygamy, Triple talak and Halala? While it was conveniently easy to show Lord Shiva running like a cartoon. 'My Name is Khan' came just about the time the Islamophobia narrative was created by the left and radicals in the west. Never forget that Media and Movies have a very large influence on Indian populace. Those terrorist attacks during UPA govt almost looked as if it was some normal thing all along. And nobody could point out or even speak that obviously some locals are helping the terrorists.

We saw series of terror attacks and Salman himself in numerous crimes, still the Rahul and Prem movies continued pushing the good guys narrative of Bollywood’s bhai. 2014 onwards what we are seeing is the buried hate, which was always there. It's not that some Modi, Trump or Boris came and suddenly the environment changed. No. They just took off their clothes for you to see the reality.

The radicals were busy finishing off non-muslims elsewhere like Afghanistan, Libya, Lebanon, Turkey, Egypt etc during previous last two decades. While we had plently of whitewashing movies on Mughals, Hindu kings seldom find space in Bollywood, until the attempt is to somehow weaken them. The Bajirao Mastani was another attempt to weaken the valour of a warrior never defeated, as some Devdas who died for his Muslim lover. Where are the movies on Shushrut, Aryabhatta, Cholas, Lalitaditya, Raja dahir, Shivaji, Prithviraj Chouhan? Why there wasn't any scene on demolition of temples and conversion in Mughal-e-Azam? Why is such ignorance to truth while stereotyping characters in the movies?

Some stereotypes however are very easy to point at:

● A Sindhi always speaks weird type of Hindi and is in a movie to make people laugh on his weird Hindi. Eg: Shreyas Talpade in Houseful 2.

● A Tamil Brahman is a fool. What else Mehmood in Padosan and Sharukh Khan in Ra One were at?

muhammd Mehmood in Padosan, a Bollywood classic, was significantly responsible for mainstreaming this offensive caricature of the mythical Madrassi.

● Tantra vidya is always Black Magic. A Maa Kali worshipper is everytime a villain.
● A Bania is some sort of Leecher. Eg: Mother India.
● A person with the Thakur surname is some sort of Terrorist who has terrorized the villagers.
● Person speaking pure Tatsam Hindi is always made fun of.
● Gangster is almost always a Hindu who spots a big tilak on his forehead.
● A Hindu Pandit clad in Saffron clothes is always a Dhongi.

IIM Professor Dheeraj Sharma conducted a deep study on Bollywood's stereotyping behaviour from 1950 to 2010. He found out that in 58% of the movies, Corrupt Politicians have a Brahman Surname. 74% movies presented Sikhs as laughable. In movies having Pakistan based theme, 90% movies shows Pakistanis as welcoming, courteous, open-minded and courageous. In Same movies Indians were largely projected as narrow-minded, unwelcoming, and conservative.
Watch his video here

The stereotyping in Bollywood is an attempt to whitewash and create a narrative in society where every invader is good, every terrorist was a good guy once, every gangster is a Robinhood, every Hindu is apologetic and it is cool to murder the ideas and values of the great land of Bharat so that the culture that has stood undivided for eons is finally decimated in to oblivion.

Ankit Shah is a Indo-Pacific Security & Foreign Policy Observer, Consultant, PhD scholar and Past Academic & Research Associate of IIM Ahmedabad. Follow his twitter handle @ankitatIIMA for China-Pak issues.

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