Bollywood is the largest film industry in the world in terms of the number of movies produced every year. However, apart from all the hits, flops, and the average, there exists another brand of Indian cinema that is deliberately kept out of our reach. Given below is the list of top 10 movies banned in India by the Censor Board
Star Cast: Ranjit Bawa, Shefali Sharma, Yashpal Sharma, Raza Murad, and Avtar Gill
Director: Baghal Singh
Reason For Ban: The CFBC banned this movie about Khalistan Liberation Force (a terrorist organization) member Toofan Singh in 2016. The movie was released internationally in 2017
Toofan Singh tops our list of top 10 movies banned in India, it is the latest movie to be banned by the censor board. Toofan Singh is a 2017 Punjabi film directed by Baghal Singh with a release date of 4 August 2017 in Australia and the UK. This movie is about the biography of the famous Kharku (Militant) Toofan Singh.
Star Cast: Raj Kakra, Nitu Pandher, Shakku Rana, Amritpal Singh, Karamjit Singh Batth, Victor John, Sunny Gill, Sarabjit Purewal, and Rajwinder Samrala
Director: Naresh S. Garg
Reason for Ban: The movie was related to the Punjabi Suba movement and a period of militancy. Indian release of the film banned by the CBFC
One more Punjabi movie is included in our list of top 10 movies banned in India, Dharam Yudh Morcha is a Punjabi film about the era from 1947 to 1984 that highlights the fight of the Sikh people of India to safeguard the fundamental rights of the Sikh religion and linguistic minorities and to establish equal Sikh Rights in the Region of India.
Star Cast: Daniel Craig, Rooney Mara, Christopher Plummer, Stellan Skarsgård, Steven Berkoff, Robin Wright, and Yorick van Wageningen
Director: David Fincher
Reason for Ban: It was banned for its adult scenes of rape and torture. The Central Board of Film Certification demanded that these scenes be cut, which the director David Fincher refused to do
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is a 2011 psychological crime thriller film based on the 2005 novel by Swedish writer Stieg Larsson. It was directed by David Fincher with a screenplay by Steven Zaillian. Starring Daniel Craig as journalist Mikael Blomkvist and Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander, it tells the story of Blomkvist's investigation to find out what happened to a girl from a wealthy family who disappeared 40 years prior. He recruits the help of Salander, a computer hacker.
Star Cast: shows real footage and interviews of the people and criminals associated with the 2012 Delhi Gang-Rape case.
Director: Leslee Udwin
Reason for Ban: This television documentary about the 2012 Delhi gang rape was prevented from being broadcast by a stay order from a court, due to perceived negative public sentiment including remarks defending the rape which drew a public outcry in India when the film was shown. The movie was uploaded to YouTube and the Indian government requested it be removed
Although it is a documentary, still it is included in our list of top 10 movies banned in India due to the sensitivity of issues discussed in the movie. Seelatest team believes that the public should watch this documentary to know about the mentality of rapists and those who defend them.
Star Cast: Dakota Johnson, Jamie Dornan, Jennifer Ehle, and Marcia Gay Harden
Director: Sam Taylor-Johnson
Reason for Ban: The film was not given a rating by the Censor Board, even after voluntary cuts by the distributor
Fifty Shades of Grey is a 2015 American erotic romantic drama film directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson, with a screenplay by Kelly Marcel. The film is based on E. L. James’ 2011 novel of the same name and stars Dakota Johnson as Anastasia Steele, a college graduate who begins a sadomasochistic relationship with young business magnate Christian Grey, played by Jamie Dornan.
Star Cast: Kay Kay Menon, Pavan Malhotra, Aditya Srivastava, Imtiaz Ali, Pratima Kazmi, and Zakir Hussain
Director: Anurag Kashyap
Reason for Ban: The movie was based on the 1993 Bombay bombings. The release was blocked until the verdict of the lawsuit by the Bombay High Court on the petition of the under-trials. The film was originally set to be released in India on 28 January 2005. The producers appealed at the Supreme Court but the High Court order was upheld. The movie finally saw its release on 9 February 2007.
Black Friday is a 2004 Indian Hindi-language crime 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, it chronicles the events that led to the blasts and the subsequent police investigation.
Star Cast: Anubrata Basu, Abal Joyraj, Kamalika Banerjee, Silajit Majumder, and Rii Sen
Director: Qaushiq Mukherjee,
Reason for Ban: The film was banned in India due to explicit sexual scenes
Gandu is a 2010 Indian erotic black-and-white art drama film directed by Qaushiq Mukherjee. It features Anubrata, Joyraj, Kamalika, Silajit, and Rii in the lead roles. The film's music is by the alternative rock band Five Little Indians. Gandu previewed at Yale University before making its international premiere on 29 October 2010 at the 2010 South Asian International Film Festival in New York City.
Star Cast: Sanjeev Kumar and Suchitra Sen
Reason for Ban: It was banned during the Emergency by Indira Gandhi and subsequently released in 1977 after Janata Party came into power
The film was based on the life of the then-Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and her relationship with her estranged husband, but in reality, only the look was inspired by the politician Tarkeshwari Sinha and Indira Gandhi. The story is based on a chance meeting of an estranged couple after several years, when wife Aarti Devi, now a leading politician happens to stay in the hotel run by her husband during an election campaign.
Star Cast: Seema Biswas and Nirmal Pandey
Director: Shekhar Kapur
Reason for Ban: It was banned temporarily by the Delhi High Court after Phoolan Devi, the subject of the film's story, challenged its authenticity.
Bandit Queen is also included in our list of top 10 movies banned in India. Bandit Queen is a 1996 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. It was written, produced & directed by Shekhar Kapur and starred Seema Biswas as the title character.
Reason for Ban: The documentary film was banned by the Censor Board for being provocative and under concerns that it may trigger communal violence. It was based on the 2002 Gujarat violence. But, it was cleared after some months
Final Solution is a 2004 documentary film directed by Rakesh Sharma concerning the 2002 Gujarat riots in which both Hindu and Muslims were targeted in the state of Gujarat by political extremists. In order to rationalize their violence, Hindu extremists had made the claim that their actions were in fact a "spontaneous response" to the Godhra Train Burning incident on 27 February 2002.
But as the film proceeds with victims continuing to come forward and share their experiences, a more unsettling possibility seems to emerge- that far from being a spontaneous expression of outrage, the Hindu extremist violence had been carefully coordinated and planned. An official estimate states that 254 Hindus and 790 Muslims were killed during the riots, with 223 more missing.
The documentary consists mostly of interviews, with both Muslims and Hindus, of multiple generations, and both sexes, with different views regarding the causes, justifications, and the actual events of the violence that occurred, as well as their prospects for the future.