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Narrow minds dossier ‘07

india Updated: Oct 28, 2007 16:03 IST

Muzzling television: The I&B Ministry banned AXN for showing the “World’s Sexiest Commercials” and FTV for airing shows such as “Midnight Hot.” Charges against the channels: offending good taste, denigrating women and damaging public morality.

Banning Bollywood: Bajrang Dal kept “Parzania” off Gujarat’s cinemas while Himachal Pradesh refused to screen “Traffic Signal.” The gripe against Madhur Bhandarkar’s film: it uses a derogatory word for eunuchs. Singing sensation Himesh Reshammiya came under the radar for the song “Ya Ali,” with the ruckus being raised by the Shias this time.

And Hollywood: Richard Gere was forced to apologize for kissing Shilpa Shetty, at an AIDS charity event of all things! The gala wedding of Arun Nayar and Liz Hurley was slapped with a court notice for making a “mockery of Hindu customs.” Offences: the bride wore a revealing dress & didn’t take off her shoes for the pheras, and the guests had drinks.

Monitoring the Internet: Comedian Gauthum Prasad raised eyebrows with his Youtube video showcasing Gandhi in a radical new avataar: gyrating to music, pole dancing, and not shy of violence. Prasad was forced to apologize. Meanwhile in Maharashtra, BJP called for banning social networking sites. Allegation: Orkut and the like corrupt young minds.

Policing sex: Concern for young minds was also cited for banning school sex education in six states. Never mind that India has the world’s third largest AIDS population. Another casualty of the sex wars: the Madhya Pradesh government banned Crezendo, a vibrating condom by Hindustan Latex. Apparently so-called “illicit sex toys” too are anti-Indian.