Are we strangers to Hindi films tossing homophobic jokes to gain cheap chuckles? Nope. In fact, homosexual characters are primarily accommodated in films to offer a barrel of laughter at their expense. Unaware of the underlying homophobia, we did vibe to ‘maa da ladla bigad gaya’ too.

Nonetheless, a Twitter user @manishgaekwad has traced homophobic elements in films back to Bollywood years ago, which we all looked at but perhaps missed.

Sholay, an iconic film that has gone down in the history of Hindi cinema, had scenes that reeked of classic homophobia but we nonchalantly overlooked them.

Veeru Dada, starring Dharmendra, promulgated the code of how homosexual men should seem; in this case, the character was represented by a cis-het Shakti Kapoor.

In Mast Kalandar, the He-Man of Bollywood returns to shave off Pinkoo’s (Kher’s) curly mohawk while warning his father ‘Koi baal waali aulad paida kar, chakke nahi.’

Thankfully, with the proliferation of OTT platforms, we aren’t witnessing the warped portrayal of LGBTQ characters.

Zee Zest

Today we have moved past the colour pink, the number 6, and ‘that’ hairstyle yet Bollywood gets away with a slew of problematic anti-LGBTQ tropes. And the Censor Board filters out everything but them.