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‘Why English credits for Hindi films?’

In its latest diktat, the Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has issued an advisory to the Hindi film industry, questioning why Hindi films should have the title and credits in English.

In a letter written by Girish Chandra Aron, Director, Films, to five film organisations, the Ministry has requested them to “motivate and persuade” to show credits in Hindi, or bilingually where one language is Hindi, for Hindi films.

The letter dated July 26 was sent across to the Film and Producers Guild of India, Film Federation of India, Indian Motion Pictures Producers Association, Motion Picture and Distributors Association, and the Indian Films and TV Producers Council.

“Logically, the credits of the film should be in the same language as that of the film so that people who are not conversant with English are not deprived of the information relating to the cast and crew,” the letter says.

The letter does not mention that it will be mandatory to do so from now on.

“It is therefore requested to kindly motivate and persuade your associated members to show credits in Hindi films in Hindi…”, the letter adds.

Changing markets

The Hindi film industry has expressed reservations about the move. “I don’t think it is workable. Hindi films cater not just to an Indian audience but also to global viewers. The markets have changed, most of the money is earned by selling them in an overseas market. So we have to have English titles,” producer and former Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) Chairman Pahlaj Nihalani said.

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