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Upper-Caste Hindu Characters Dominate Bollywood

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Recently, The Hindu newspaper, after  analysing the lead characters of more than 250 films released in Bollywood during the period between 2013 and 2014, released a report that revealed that only six of the lead characters belonged to backward castes. In 2014, three films – Manjunath and Highway and Mary Kom – had lead characters from backward caste and poor economical background.

Manjunath is a real-life account of an Indian Oil employee who was murdered for speaking out against a corrupt oil dealer. Imitiaz Ali’s Highway was a road movie and one of its lead characters is Mahavir (Randeep Hooda), a criminal from the Gujjar community in rural Haryana. Mary Kom was a biopic of India’s boxing star Mary Kom, a member of Kom tribal community in Manipur.

In 2013, films like BandookRevolver Rani, and Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela had protagonists from lower castes. The newspaper also finds that in 2013, four Bollywood movies had heroes Christian background, one Jain, three Sikh and 5 Muslim. Of the rest, 65 were upper caste Hindus, while the remaining were Hindus of unstated caste without caste reference, says the report.
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