Silenced Even After Twenty Years

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Dec 8, 2006

September 2004. We race against time to finish Amu and submit it to the Indian censor board without whose clearance the film cannot release.

We had planned the release to be on November 1, 2004 – the 20th anniversary of the 1984 carnage. And really worked hard to meet this deadline.

The censor board delayed it for 3 months. Finally in December the verdict was given:

6 lines of dialog to be removed from the film – or redubbed with acceptable dialogue.

An “A” Certificate (equivalent to the American NC 17 rating).

The cuts:

Almost all the lines were from the scene where fictional widows explain to the protagonists who exactly organized the “riots”.

“Minister hee to thhe. Unhee ke shaye pe sab hua” (It was a Minister. It was all done at his direction).

“Saare shamil thhe… police, afsar, sarkar, neta, saare” (They were all involved … the police, the bureaucracy, the government, the politicians – all).

Instead of changing the lines so that the audience would not be pulled out of the film we took the decision to let the characters go silent. We thought it was a powerful indictment for audiences to see fictional widows in a fictional film silently moving their lips. Silenced even after twenty tears.

When the film released in India a ripple would go through the audience – censor censor…and in every q and a we were asked what the lines of dialogue were.

If ever there were doubts that a cover-up of history had taken place, they were set to rest when the Censor Board explained why they gave the film an “A” certificate, They said:

“Why should young people know a history which is best buried and forgotten?”

We made the film because they need to know.


Feb 25, 2008
Boota ji
You did good job, heinous crimes should be remembered just to pass on the madness of so called leaders who instead of leading in bad times act like Gangsters. Personally I applaud your efforts. Never ever let the Truth dies and let it prevail it in the time to come.
Silence represents further suggestion of suppression, I wish it could have been" CENSORED"
.The cause of History change some times is read behind such scenes. THANKS.:star::star::star::star::star:

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