Was Naam Shabana ban-worthy?

Film doing better than Raasta, has a good story line, yet banned - Why?
Published 03 Apr, 2017 09:51pm

The axe of Censor Board in Pakistan has wielded once again and this time, it is Bollywood flick Naam Shabana that has been pulled off cinemas after one day of its release.

The film was passed by the Censor people in Islamabad that too after a full board hearing but the decision to ban the film was as sudden as the decision to allow it for screening. Sadly, the film was doing better than the Sahir Lodhi crap in cinemas which should have been the one to be banned and canned but we Pakistanis love ourselves, hence the C grade flick is still in cinemas and the A grade one isn't.

Read more: Naam Shabana Clears Full Board And Gears Up For Release

Was there any reason to ban Naam Shabana? I was one of the few who managed to watch the film on Friday, before it was banned. There was not a single scene or dialogue that would have made a Pakistani uncomfortable yet the Censor people found it offensive somehow. Maybe they need to update their calendars to 2017 where actresses can play spies and kick the butts of bad guys, something that might have been offensive 70 years back.

This is not the first time a girl has kicked ass on screen - Babra Sharif was famous for fighting men on screen and getting away with it. Even Shabnam, Anjuman and Reema did that in a few movies so yes, the Pakistanis have been there, done that. Why Shabana Khan (Taapsee Pannu) couldn't do it is beyond my imagination and only a person with below average intelligence could get offended with the kicks, the punches and the antics of the girl. The Censor people might have thought that women in their homes might get the idea of retaliating to their stupidity after watching the film and that logic is similar to children-shouldn't-watch-cartoons-as-it-makes-them-violent.

Remember James Bond? Has his actions made you a spy or prompted you to join an intelligence agency? No. Then why would anyone get the idea from watching Naam Shabana which is a prequel to Baby and can be termed as a spinoff if more SHABANA-flicks are made. Baby was rightfully banned in Pakistan because the story was sort-of inspired from Bollywood director's fantasy but Naam Shabana had nothing of that sort.

It was the story of a girl who had been to juvenile prison for preventing her mother's death (resulting in her violent father's), lost her boyfriend to hooligans and joined 'the agency' to get revenge and then find a direction in life. The story could have been made in Pakistan but here we have no time for experiments; here we are more into single-track rom coms with little hope for something out of the ordinary. All we can do now is wait for some miracle to happen that could take sensible people into Censor Board, rather than those to whom no one listens and that’s why the audience has to face the music.