Javed Akhtar launches brutal attack against ‘refugee’ Shekhar Kapur, asks him to cut ‘melodrama’ and see ‘psychiatrist’


Lyricist Javed Akhtar has lashed out at filmmaker Shekhar Kapur for his ‘melodrama’ after he called himself a refugee in a country ruled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Launching a brutal attack on Kapur, Akhtar asked him to immediately see a psychiatrist.

Javed Akhtar

This was after Kapur took to Twitter to write, “Started life as refugee of Partition. Parents gave everything to make a life for kids. Was always in fear of ‘intellectuals’. They made me feel insignicant. Small. Then suddenly embraced me after my films. I still fear them. Their embrace is like a bite of snake. Still a refugee.”

His post evoked strong condemnation on social media with many asking if he was targeting actors such as Naseeruddin Shah and Shabana Azmi, both of whom have recently criticised the politics of hate under the government headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Film critic Anna MM Vetticad wrote, “Who are these intellectuals who made you feel “insignificant” & “small” b4 your films were released, Mr Kapur? You mean #ShabanaAzmi & #NaseeruddinShah who acted in your debut film Masoom in 1983 when u were unknown? Should this tweet be described as ingratitude / a lie / both?”

Little later, Shabana Azmi’s husband Javed Akhtar launched an extraordinary attack by posting a series of tweets in response to Kapur’s social media post. The award-winning poet-lyricist wrote, “who are these intellectuals who embraced you and you found that embrace like a snake’s bite ? Shyam Benegal , Adoor Gopal Krishna , Ram chandra Guha ? Really ? . Shekhar saheb you are not well . You need help . Come on , there is no shame in meeting a good psychiatrist.”

Akhtar’s subsequent tweet on the same topic read, “What do you mean by still a refugee Does it mean that you feel like an outsider n not an Indian n you don’t feel that this is your motherland .If in India you are still a refugee where will you not feel like a refugee ,In Pakistan? Cut this melodrama you poor rich but lonely guy.”

Akhtar added, “You introduce yourself as neither prejudiced by the past nor afraid of the future living in this moment and in the same breath you say you are a refugee of partition and still a refugee . One doesn’t need a magnifying glass to see the contradiction.”

Kapur’s rant came days after 49 prominent Indians including filmmaker Aparna Sen and historian Ram Chandra Guha wrote to PM Modi on the alarming rise in lynchings of Muslims by Hindutva fanatics.

Kapur on Saturday had praised PM Modi for taking the power away from the feudal class and transferring it to poor people of India. He had written, “What PM @narendramodi has managed to do in these elections is nothing short of a revolution. Finally power has been taken away from a feudal class and handed back to the people. It’s the world’s first democratic revolution.”


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