Bollywood has been a bridge between India and Pakistan through several tense years. But the latest escalation in tension between the two embittered neighbours is set to burn this bridge. In the wake of the Pulwama terror attack, which claimed the lives of 44 CRPF troopers, All India Cine Workers Association had announced a blanket ban on Pakistani artists from working in Indian films earlier this month. Now, after Indian Air Force's surgical strike on its soil, Pakistan is planning to boycott Indian movies.
The Cinema Exhibitors Association in Pakistan has decided to boycott all content originating from India, ANI quoted Pakistani Information and Broadcasting Minister Choudhary Fawad Hussain as saying. This means that no Indian films will be allowed to screen in Pakistan. Hussain further said that Pakistan Electronic Media Regulation Authority (PEMRA) has been instructed to act against Made in India advertisements.
Choudhary Fawad Hussain, Pakistan I&B Minister: Cinema Exhibitors Association has boycotted Indian content, no Indian movie will be released in Pakistan. Also have instructed PEMRA to act against made in India advertisements. (file pic) pic.twitter.com/UspJsa43tj- ANI (@ANI) February 26, 2019
Over the past few years, several Indian films have been prohibited from being screened in Pakistan due to a variety of reasons ranging from ongoing border conflict to content portraying Pakistan in a bad light. Aamir Khan's blockbuster movie Dangal was banned after the actor refused to remove the scenes with Indian Tricolour and the Indian national anthem in them.
At the end of last week, several Indian film producers had decided not to showcase their latest releases in Pakistan in protest over the Pulwama terror attack. In light of this, Pakistan banning Indian films comes off as redundant. The decision is not likely to have any significant impact on the box office collections of the Indian films, either, since Pakistan does not contribute much to their worldwide collections any way.
But since, Pakistan film industry does not produce as many films as the one in India, stopping the screening of Indian films is more likely to affect the exhibition sector there, experts believe.
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