From political to controversial, Adah Sharma starrer ‘The Kerala Story’ created an uproar in the nation soon after it was released in the theatres. Written and directed by Sudipto Sen, the movie premiered on May 5. After falsely claiming in its preview that 32,000 missing women in Kerala converted to Islam and joined the terrorist group Islamic State, the movie sparked a significant uproar.

The Kerala Story has drawn criticism for receiving tax-free status from Madhya Pradesh, and it has been in the spotlight ever since its teaser was unveiled in November 2022. On the other hand, Tamil Nadu’s multiplex theatres have stopped showing The Kerala Story as of Sunday blaming the film’s poor reception. 

As we talk about The Kerala Story, this is not the first movie that was made tax free in the country. Movies that have made a huge impact on the audiences’ mindset and promoted social cause tops the list. Let us look at some of these movies that were made free of tax by the government.

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The Kashmir Files (2022)

Another movie that created a storm in the nation, which included political parties getting indulged in the controversy. Anupam Kher starrer The Kashmir Files, which details the emigration of Kashmiri Pandits from the Valley, was released on March 11, 2022. The film was made tax-free in Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Bihar, Karnataka, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Tripura, Goa, and Haryana and was directed by Vivek Agnihotri.

Chappak (2020)

Chhapaak, starring Deepika Padukone, was released in the year 2020. Directed by Meghna Gulzar, the movie is based on the life of Laxmi Agarwal, a survivor of an acid attack. The movie was made tax-free in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Chhattisgarh.


Pad Man (2018)

Arunachalam Muruganantham, a social activist, served as the inspiration for the Akshay Kumar film Pad Man. The film was directed by R Balki and was released in 2018. In Rajasthan, the movie was made tax-free. 


Airlift (2016)

Airlift, also starring Akshay Kumar, was released in 2016 and depicted the evacuation of Indians residing in Kuwait during the Iraqi invasion. Raja Krishna Menon was the director, and Uttar Pradesh and Bihar declared it to be tax-free.


Sarabjit (2016)

The biographical drama, which was directed by Omung Kumar, was based on the life of Sarabjit Singh, an Indian citizen who was found guilty of terrorism and espionage in 1991 and sentenced to death by the Pakistani Supreme Court, he later served 22 years in jail. Uttar Pradesh made the movie tax-free.


Toilet: Ek Prem Katha (2017)

The first film to go tax-free in the post-GST period was Akshay Kumar starrer Toilet: Ek Prem Katha. The movie addressed the social problem of women needing privacy to use the toilets. The Uttar Pradesh government declared the movie as tax-free.


Uri: The Surgical Strike (2019)

The film is based on the retaliation to the 2016 Uri incident, which ended up grossing Rs 342.06 crore globally. The government of Uttar Pradesh made the movie tax-free.


Neerja (2016)

Dangal and Sonam Kapoor's highly praised biopic both came out in the same year. The hijacking of Pan Am Flight 73 in Karachi, Pakistan, was the inspiration for the movie. In Delhi, Maharashtra, and Uttar Pradesh, it was rendered tax-free.