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Bomb Blasts in New Delhi Cinema Halls

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Two people died, and fifty more were injured in New Delhi, India, when two bombs exploded in cinema halls showing a new film, Jo Bole So Nihal, a film certain Sikh groups felt denigrated their faith.

The story of the film, which I have not yet seen, is apparently about a Sikh police officer who travels to New York and single-handedly foils a plot to assassinate the US President. This sounds like a pretty good, positive storyline. The crazyfolk were offended apparently by the title – a sacred phrase – and that the lead character was played by Sunny Deol, a Hindu, and scenes depict him being chased by scantily clad women, while Sikh scriptures are being recited.

Sunny is actually a very popular actor given to playing the lead role in patriotic films, like Border, and his father, Dharmendra was a dashing star of yesteryear. They are Punjabis, and one could almost consider them Sikhs.

The Sikhs earlier were embroiled in a misguided secession and terrorist movement from India in the 1980s, that was ended by strong police action, and subsequently the assassination of the Indian Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi, by two of her Sikh bodyguards.

Historically, the Sikhs were an offshoot of Hinduism, initially close to Sufism, and subsequenly a warrior clan-like religion dedicated to fighting against the Muslim rulers of India, like Aurungzeb.

The film, Jo Bole So Nihal”, or By God’s Word, is apparently a middling film. The reviews have it as a lame comedy/action film, one that would likely have sunk without a trace were it not for these unfortunate incidents.

“The problem is, the comedy can’t make up its mind whether it wants to be a satire or slapstick. The narrative is finally much of neither. It all adds up to a whole lot of chaotic mayhem about gangsters and terrorists.”

Update: I was able to find a torrent for Jo Bole So Nihal – I do not think this is a complete version of the film.

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About aacool

  • 99 percent of Americans have never heard the word Sikh. Unless it’s “Sikh and Destroy” by Mehulla (Metallica)

    The film truly bombed, then? Sorry. Sorry. Penance.

    Did any of the characters have an abortion is what I want to know. That’s what usually sets ’em off stateside.


    I wouldn’t say 995 of Americans are unfamiliar with the term Sikh, but I am sure most people are not aware of what religion a Sikh is affiliated with, or how they differ from the main.

    I was under the impression that the Sikhs had toned down their violent activities and were more on the political side, but I suppose that is no longer the case.


    Aaman, I’d encourage you to continue posting noteworthy news from that corner of the world. The American media won’t bother with it, and having your perspective added to the reporting offers more insight for all of us.

  • The Sikhs are mostly political now – almost entirely, I should say. I could do a pretty indepth expose of the complicity of governments, India included, in arming up the Sikhs in the 1980s, and then facing the consequences.

    Stay tuned…


    A sidenote, sometime before I enlisted, Sikhs were allowed to join the US Army and at a minimum war the turban, beard, and dagger. I never really researched it, but I have heard about it from more than one old-timer.

    In the ’80’s with the focus on chem warfare, the beard and turban prevented wearing of protective gear, so the Sikhs were given the option of separation from the military or cutting their beards and discarding the turban.

  • A third bomb blast was reported near a railway crossing. One person was injured – unlucky sod. The incident was not linked to the bomb attacks.

    Incidentally, a Lashkar-e-Toiba militant was arrested in New Delhi on Monday soon after the blasts – no details whether he is connected with the bombs.

    The film has been pulled – bad opening weekend.

  • Lashkar-e-Toiba militant

    OK, ya are gonna have to explain that one.

    Er, please.

  • The Lashkar-e-Toiba are a terrorist group based in Pakistan – from wikipedia

    Lashkar-e-Toiba or Lashkar-i-Taiba (the Army of the Pure) (formed 1990) is a terrorist Islamist group based in Pakistan and active in carrying out terrorist attacks on Indian civilians and Armed forces. It is the armed wing of Markaz Dawa-Wal-Irshad (the Centre for Religious Learning and Propagation), an Islamist organisation of the Wahabi sect of Islam. US Secretary of State Colin Powell in a notification on December 26, 2001 designated the outfit as a foreign terrorist organisation.

    They carried out the attack against the Indian parliament in Dec 2001. From another source,

    The LeT’s professed ideology goes beyond merely challenging India’s sovereignty over the State of Jammu and Kashmir. The Lashkar’s ‘agenda’, as outlined in a pamphlet titled Why are we waging jihad includes the restoration of Islamic rule over all parts of India. Further, the outfit propagates a narrow Islamist fundamentalism preached by its mentor, the MDI. It seeks to bring about a union of all Muslim majority regions in countries that surround Pakistan. Towards that end, it is active in J&K, Chechnya and other parts of Central Asia. The outfit had claimed that it had assisted the Taliban militia and Osama bin Laden’s Al Qaeda terrorist network in Afghanistan during November and December 2002 in their fight against the US aided Northern Alliance.
    …The LeT has also been part of the Bosnian campaign against the Serbs.

    The Markaz campus at Muridke in Lahore, its headquarters, was used as a hide-out for Ramzi Yousef and Mir Aimal Kansi, who was convicted and sentenced to death for killing two Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) officers outside the CIA’s headquarters in Washington in January 1993.

    Bad guys – where’s Team America?

  • From the Times of India,

    Senior officers have ruled out involvement of some former Punjab terrorist organisations. “We don’t believe the attack was to protest against the screening of the movie. There is nothing to link this with former Punjab terrorists,” said a police officer.

    He did admit that it wasn’t a low-intensity blast as had been suggested earlier. “It could have been anything, going by the damage. It doesn’t look like the work of an amateur group as had been earlier suggested,” he said.

  • Ah, American-bashing: the great American export. I find it ironic that a story about a theater bombing in India turned into an opportunity to bash the intelligence and values of the average American.


    Throttle back, Happy, I don’t see any America bashing going on.

  • Unbelievably, the torrent is the entire movie – within 80 MB – a VCD – I will subject Blogcritics to a review of this B-grade potboiler

  • Amandeep Singh

    Aaaman and fellow readers,
    although its been a long time since mr. aaman wrote this misinformed and childish piece, its nevertheless important to point out the utter inauthenticity of his views about the Film, Sikh sentiments or their freedom struggle since the 80s.
    firstly, if mr.aaman had an ounce of honesty he should first admit the anti-minority bias that indian media especially bollywood is based upon; it is basically a sub-structure of Indian RAW and IB, that supports the nationlist agendas through the subcontinent.
    Mr. aaman, finds it easy to label a freedom struggle that has costs the Sikhs over a 100,000 lives lost to all out genocidal invasions and attacks by the State- and more seriously the destruction of the most sacred shrine of the religion the Golden Temple, at the hands of Indian army ( which by the way used tanks and helicopters against civilians against all Warfare standards.) The destruction of Golden temple, and simultaneous attacks on 78 other shrines (operation bluestar), amounted to the death of more than 10,000 lives. after this an even bigger genocide took place under the lable operation WOODROSE- in which thousands of baptized Sikhs were labeled as terrorists by the army ( as seen in many army memos) and were dissappeared with in months. These gave Sikhs legitimate and ethical reason to execute Indira Gandhi’s by any means possible.
    After her assassination, gov. sponsored mobs massacred about 20,000-25,000 people with the help of the police in north india… then for 10 years the army, the CRP, the commandos, the police, went on a rampage to control the Sikh insurgent response- in which they killed more than 70,000 SIkhs… they would not even return the bodies to the families- simply creamate them or just through the bodies into the rivers. (this was so frequent that the neighboring states had officially complained about their river gates getting clogged by dead bodies coming from Punjab) After years of indescribable pain and terror the gov was able to kill enough people to discontinue the struggle… the quiteness in Punjab, India today is not that of peace but that of the graveyard, its the memories of terror that keep the people from opening their mounths.
    And after all this Bollywood movies come out mocking the very scripture and prayers of the people, and insensitive people like mr. aaman lay the responsibilty on the victim for not keeping calm… this is too much. before opening your mouth, be more sensitive to the suffering of a people, before labeling them as ‘misguided’ and try to fight the desire to bow to the majority- its hard but until the you do that you will not prove yourself as a sincere person, let alone a Sikh.

  • bobbu singh

    there where two people who did the blast and i know a person he lived in ma village

  • david fox

    how can u call them “crazy folk”? Directors should know what offends the people that they are making the film on. And Indian cinema makes so much money for making useless movies, but the money is made becuase they use a random sikh character in it. I guess this was another attempt