The Mumbai film industry is very old and traces its roots during the days of the Raj to the twenties of the last century. Those were the days of British rule and kissing was allowed on the screen, but all this changed after 1947 and kissing was banned on the screen in films. Many felt that the depiction of a kiss on the screen went against Indian culture.Many have forgotten that ancient Hindu temples at Konark, Chauthan and Khujaraho depicted not only kissing but the sexual act in graphic detail in the form of carvings on the temple walls.

One inalienable fact remains that Mumbai and the Indian film industry have been greatly influenced by Hollywood and its number 2 position in the world to a great degree is because of the influence of Hollywood.

Khosla commission on kissing

The government listened to artists and rational individuals and appointed a commission to examine the feasibility of introducing kissing on the Indian and Hindi screen. The commission headed by Justice Khosla of theSupreme Court recommended that kissing in an artistic way could be allowed on the Hindi screen.

The censor board was accordingly instructed to clear kissing scenes depicted in an 'artistic' way. However, what artistic meant was never specified. Matters did not end with the Khosla commission, because many heroines who for decades had never kissed on screen, were extremely reluctant to kiss. It took some years before kissing between lovers began to be depicted on the Hindi screen. But a brave breed of film directors finally had their way and kissing was slowly introduced.

The old breed of actresses faded out and the newcomers were not averse to being kissed on screen. Times changed.

Kissing in Hindi films now

Kissing is now an integral part of Indian cinema, though many still have reservations about it. One of the most famous on-screen lip-lockers is the actor Imran Hashmi who has endeared himself to the masses by kissing heroines on the screen. His lip-lock scenes with the actress Mallika Sherawat in the film " Murder"(2003) is still talked about today.

But habits die hard and there are reports that some top actresses still do not want to kiss on-screen. However the wind is blowing and Mumbai films are more and more following Hollywood in not only kissing but the depiction of nudity. Hindi films are now having a world market and in the Middle East, they give Hollywood films a run for their money. Quality films are also being made as was the case of the award-winning Oscar film " Slum Dog Millionaire."

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