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13 Aug, 2022
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Urban Asian.com

Dear Bollywood, Please Stop With These Annoying Stereotypes!

India is a diverse country. We expect its diversity to be represented in Bollywood films – one of the greatest means of entertainment. But they end up stereotyping people on- screen based on their profession or ethnicity.

Here’s a list of some of these stereotypes in Bollywood movies that have become deeply ingrained. Honestly, we are just tired of them!

Pretty much every police constable is named ‘Tambe’ or ‘Shinde’ in Bollywood movies. 

You just a pick any random Bollywood movie and you’ll find a police constable with the surname ‘Shinde’.

The small town to which the main lead of the film belongs is almost always Lucknow and Kanpur.

From Tanu Weds Manu, Bala to Jolly LLB, Ishaqzaade, Pati Patni Aur Woh, and Pagglait, there are so many films on this list. Why so obsessed with these cities, Bollywood? The Indian map is quite a big one, so to say!

NRIs in Bollywood movies are mostly Punjabis, right? 

Be it Monsoon Wedding, Bend It Like Beckham, or Namaste London, all these films promote the idea that NRIs are all Punjabi speaking, doing Bhangra, Dhol beating people only to make the Bollywood movies must watch. Well, according to Bollywood all the NRIs live in Canada or London.

The best friend of the lead actor is predominantly someone from the Muslim community. 

The token of Muslim playing the second fiddle has gotten quite recurring. Remember, Aparshakti Khurana as Abbas Sheikh, Guddu’s best friend in Luka Chuppi, and as Fahim Abdul Rizvi, Chintu’s BFF in Pati Patni Aur Woh? In Mimi, Shama played by Sai Tamhankar, Mimi’s best friend was also Muslim.

The lawyers in Bollywood movies will somehow always introduce surprise witnesses and find legal loopholes as soon they open a case file. 

The list is long – Aitraaz, Jolly LLB, OMG, Section 375, Section 420, Jazbaa, Damini. Oh, and did you notice most lawyers in these films who win the cases are failed lawyers.

Goans are always shown wearing shirts like they are going to a carnival. 

You’ll see them dressed in floral print shirts and drinking beer all the time as if they don’t have any job and spend their days only on beaches.

Overweight people are always hopeless romantics.

They can’t have any romantic prospects unless they lose weight and turn hot. This is the most annoying stereotype in Bollywood movies.

A doctor is always just a call away for home visits and those in hospitals are all surgeons. How?

We don’t find doctors visiting our homes for small issues and then they’ll just give the patient some neend ki davai.

Super-rich businessmen will have a daughter with no ambitions in life at all. 

For example, in Student of The Year, Shanaya Singhania (Alia Bhatt) is the daughter of a rich stepfather who falls in love with Abhimanyu (Sidharth Malhotra), an orphan and a scholarship student.

The housemaid will always be someone from the Marathi community. 

You’ll find her wearing a nauwari saree and ending her sentences with Arre Deva.

Some of these might seem funny but they are problematic in one way or another. It’s time we change these representations and bring some newness to Bollywood films where a cop is not always Shinde and not all rich kids are brats!

What are other such stereotypes you have noticed?

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