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Last Updated: Sunday, 10 April, 2005, 11:39 GMT 12:39 UK
Bollywood film sparks Bodo anger
India's north-eastern state of Assam has banned a new Bollywood film, Tango Charlie, following protests by the state's ethnic Bodo community.

Members of the community object to a scene that shows a Bodo rebel cutting off a hostage's ear and handing it to his girlfriend as a present.

Bodo officials say the film depicts their people as "brutal monsters".

They have demanded an official apology from director Mani Shankar and appealed for the controversial scene to be cut.

The government of Assam banned all screenings of the movie in the state after widespread street demonstrations in the Bodo-dominated areas.

A Bodo member of the state parliament, Urkha Gywra Brahma, said the film was clearly not acceptable.

Bodo rebels have fought for 18 years for a separate homeland for the Bodo people in Assam although last year they settled for an autonomous region.

All Bodo rebel groups except one have accepted the government's conditions for granting autonomy.

Bodo guerrillas have often threatened to cut off hostages' limbs unless their ransom demands are fulfilled within a specified time frame, the BBC's Subir Bhaumik reports from Calcutta.

However, there is no evidence of the rebels having actually acted on their threats, our correspondent adds.

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