Noted lyricist and writer Javed Akhtar has lashed out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi calling him a fascist. This is by far the most stinging attack by Akhtar, a known critic of the BJP, against Modi.
In a video shared by journalist Mehdi Hasan of Qatar-based Al Jazeera TV, Javed Akhtar can be seen launching a brutal attack against Modi. When asked if Narendra Modi was a fascist. Akhtar replied, “Of course he is. I mean fascists don’t have horns on their heads. Fascist in thinking and this thinking that ‘we are better than others and whatever problem we have it is because of these people.’ The moment you hate people in wholesale, you’re a fascist.”
Also speaking in the video candidly is reputed filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt, who spoke about the growing menace of Islamophobia in India under the regime headed by Modi. Bhatt said, “I think the wind of Islamophobia blew through the world after 9/11 and I think the phobia here is manufactured because I don’t think the average Indian is so frightened of a Muslim.”
For this Friday’s @AJUpFront, I asked @Javedakhtarjadu and @MaheshNBhatt, two of the biggest names in Bollywood, whether Narendra Modi is a fascist and why their fellow industry members have been so silent in the face of growing intolerance – preview clip:pic.twitter.com/E1hL3U5gKl
— Mehdi Hasan (@mehdirhasan) February 13, 2020
Bhatt continued, “I mean that kind of fear has been crafted and structured day in and day out. Media persons go out, pliable (TV) channels are working around the clock to create ‘the other.’ They need ‘the other’ to stay in power. And to hate the Muslims is the lifeline of the BJP. Let’s not mince our words.”
Earlier, filmmaker Anurag Kashyap had called Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah ‘terrorists’ after masked criminals entered the Jawaharlal Nehru University in Delhi and brutally thrashed left-leaning students and their union leaders. In a hard-hitting tweet, Kashyap had written in Hindi, “Now no shame in saying that Amit Shah and Narendra Modi, you and your BJP and ABVP are terrorists.”