Ten Bollywood Films Tackling India-Pakistan Relations

Since officially lifting a ban on Bollywood films in 2008, Pakistan has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of its neighboring country’s blooming film industry. Occasionally, though, the country’s Film Censor Board has been known to ban certain films depicting Pakistanis in a negative light–the most recent example being Saif Ali Khan’s action/spy-thriller “Agent Vinod”.

For years now, Bollywood cinema has tried to address the 1947 partition and its aftermath head-on. But such films often elicit some very polarized reactions from audiences who feel that India is favored or seen in a more negative light than Pakistan. And so you wind up with many a war biopic or portrayal of the forbidden romance between a Pakistani and an Indian. In no particular order, we give you a list of 10 films that–for better or for worse–took on the sensitive nature of the Indo-Pak relationship.

Veer Zaara

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This epic saga about two star-crossed lovers is one of the greatest love stories to be churned out by Bollywood and Yash Raj studios. Indian Air Force Squadron Leader Veer Pratap Singh (Shahrukh Khan) falls in love with the beautiful Pakistani Zaara Hayaat Khan (Preity Zinta). Despite their cultural and religious differences, they overcome the biggest obstacles of time and distance to be reunited. Through their story, we learn that geography does not have to be the only conflict in one’s love story.

As the pair so succinctly explain: “Jaisa des hai tera, waisa des hai mera” (Your country is like my country).

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