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Bollywood; A Nepalese Nationality

Written by Barsha Bishwakarma · 4 min read >
bollywood; a nepalese nationality
Poster of a typical bollywood movie

Whenever someone says “Bollywood”, the instinctive visuals that come in our mind are the over the top melodramatic scenes, flying men, dancing half-naked women, protagonist singing and dancing in every possible place on the earth, Indian weddings and all the other possible crazy fanatics than can be generated from a mind of an insane artist.

We can generalize their movie from their food actually, full of masalas and a need for Chatkara “Taah”. With times these definitions for Bollywood might have slightly changed, with an inclination of the cinema towards portrayals of character with real emotion and reality, but the gist of the art had been the same.

This vibrancy, insanity, uniqueness, and the spectrum of emotions that are depicted, have earned Bollywood its place in the world’s cinema. Alongside being a crazy world of cinema, this is also one of the biggest movie industries in existence, producing hundreds of movies every year and savored by millions around the world, irrelevant and boundless to the nationality.

The perfect example to grasp this influence is we Nepalese ourselves, where every individual with access watches and loves the genre.

Portrayal of Nepali Watchmen by Indian TV personality

A Typical Nepalese Image in Bollywood

Bollywood is different from any other form of cinema and so are the people who indulge in it. People love the cinema to the extent that they would fight for the subjects. People don’t just watch it, they live in and for it.

This cinema has changed the way they process and maintain their lives. This might have sounded like a preposterous statement to some, but the prominence of the statement can be clearly seen in and around us. It’s amusing and funny, how the movie industry which conveniently and impenitently typecast Nepalese men as a Uhhh… Sabji, a household security guard and woman as a prostitute in the gullies of an Indian brothel, is so beloved and celebrated by every Nepalese.

Yes, we celebrate Bollywood, from the way we eat to the way we sleep. Within this past decade, a drastic influence can be evidently seen from the way we have revised our lifestyle and culture to add the masala named “Bollywood”.

From our food, clothes, dance, songs, parties to even our festivals and how we celebrate them, we have transitioned every possible aspect to adjust the beautiful scene we see in the Hindi cinema. Even the slur words like “Ch***ya” and “Bh*****ke” whose meaning we may not be familiar with, have now become a common vocabulary among the youths. We indeed are the followers of “Bollywood; a Nepalese Nationality”. The imitation isn’t limited to the sensory aspect, but slowly and strikingly have affected the way we think and observe.

Intu Mintu Song Sequence

The most noticeable impact within this past decade is the way we get married, everything is a cheap imitation of Bollywood weddings, where a remarkable addition of pre-wedding functions like Mehendi and Sangeet have infiltrated our weddings and have become a must to do.

Many people who participate in this acculturation justify their indulgence in the name of international reverence or mostly as a cultural appreciation for our Terai community. The same Terai people who despite being the national food savior, are treated differently and tagged with labels such as Dhoti, Bhaiya, Velle, Kabadi, etc to contemptuously mock their profession, culture, and ethnicity.

We don’t identify them, we don’t respect their ethnicity, we don’t want to participate in their culture, we just want to rationalize our Bollywood fantasy on the stake of our brothers and sisters, in the name of national and cultural tolerance. We heartily welcome Bollywood; a Nepalese nationality but our big-hear and modern thinking seem to fail in case of accepting our own ones.

Why are we influenced by Bollywood?

Bollywood wouldn’t have become such a problem if it was limited to entertainment and had averted to interfere and intoxicate our culture. Meanwhile, observing the current scenario, it has grasped a very deep root in our culture.

The biggest culprits in this ignominious movement are the so-called media personalities, “The Influencers” who glamorize themself as the voice of the people and lecture about national pride and respect but shamelessly promote and thrive in Bollywood practices through their social media and parties. Priyanka Karki, Reecha Sharma, Aanchal Sharma, and every other personality in our country should be guilty of their hypocrisy.

Even our whole Kollywood industry from its early infancy is undeniably an intentional Bollywood movie with Nepalese actors. Therefore, one can agree to this Bollywood; A Nepalese Nationality. There is a fine line between respecting a culture and representing one, and this representation comes with a huge cost of our own national representation and identity.

The identity for which our ancestors have fought constantly and rigorously for centuries, the identity for which we are still constantly fighting at present in our borders and the same identity which we are deliberately aloof.

Priyanka Karki and Ayushman Joshi’s Nepalese Wedding

This discourse purpose is neither to stimulate hatred or contempt towards Bollywood itself or our influential personality, nor in any intention to devalue the prominent Terai culture who have a considerable resemblance to Bollywood as a Nepalese culture, but the sole motivation is to reflect the hypocrisy that lies within us and provoke a concern which may rejuvenate our identity as a country.

There is a threshold for appreciating a form of art and culture and reenacting a one in the digital as well as in reality, and we should all be aware of it. Every corner in Nepal is filled with billboards with Bollywood actors, every street with people humming to a Bollywood song, every party filled with people trying to look like a Bollywood person.

We tend to become Bollywood; a Nepalese nationality. Moreover, in this whole process of trying to impersonate a culture, we may probably lose the priceless inheritance which was presented to us with the reminiscents of the blood of our martyrs. 

In Conclusion

In summary, to solely accuse the generation who grew up on Shahrukh Khan’s song, the present situation isn’t reasonable. The reason is the way we were raised has a huge impact on our decision and most likely we didn’t have the option back then.

However, at present where we are predominantly educated and aware of ourselves, we have the power to make a decision between living a delusional Bollywood life or to inherit our own identity.  We are the generation where

Nepal and Bollywood merges, and we are the one who should be answerable to the imminent generation for their identity, also we are the one who has the choice and now is the time to make one.

Thank you Readers,

We heartily thank all our readers and especially our guest author Er. Pradeep Ramtel for sharing his wonderful article with us.

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Written by Barsha Bishwakarma
Writing makes me happy. Do what you like, and like what you do. Profile