Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar on Wednesday interviewed Prime Minister Narendra Modi in collaboration with news agency ANI. Akshay said that the interview was non-political in nature. However, there were not many takers for his claim as many detected a glaring attempt to help the BJP during the ongoing Lok Sabha polls by using Akshay’s popularity as an actor. On Twitter, many journalists felt that the decision to rope in a Bollywood actor for an interview smacked of BJP’s desperation and sign of nervousness after the conclusion of three phases of elections. On Instagram, Akshay’s followers were more unforgiving as they wrote, ‘Shame on you.’
Taking to Twitter on 22 April, Akshay had hinted about this interview with a cryptic social media post. He had written, “Getting into an unknown and uncharted territory today. Doing something I have never done before. Excited and nervous both. Stay tuned for updates.” But this led many to suspect that he was joining the BJP and will be fielded as the party’s candidate from Gurdaspur. To put speculations to rest, Akshay was quick to post another tweet that read, “Grateful for all the interest shown in my previous tweet but just clarifying in light of some wild speculation, I am not contesting elections.”
On Tuesday evening, he revealed that he had interviewed Modi in collaboration with ANI and the video will be broadcast the following day (today). His identical social media posts on Twitter and Instagram read, “While the whole country is talking elections and politics, here’s a breather. Privileged to have done this candid and COMPLETELY NON POLITICAL freewheeling conversation with our PM
@narendramodi . Watch it at 9AM tomorrow via @ANI for some lesser known facts about him!”
While the whole country is talking elections and politics, here’s a breather. Privileged to have done this candid and COMPLETELY NON POLITICAL freewheeling conversation with our PM @narendramodi . Watch it at 9AM tomorrow via @ANI for some lesser known facts about him! pic.twitter.com/Owji9xL9zn
— Akshay Kumar (@akshaykumar) April 23, 2019
While Akshay faced criticism on Twitter too, it was on Instagram, where his fans appeared more unforgiving. Fan Harpriya Puri wrote, “Shame on u akshaykumar.” User 4neeshuk commented by taking a potshot at Akshay’s citizenship status and wrote, ” Canadian reporter taking interview of biggest Indian Actor of todays time.” “When the PM of India gives Interview to a Canadian, but @ravishkumarndtv ke saamne phat jaati hai,” wrote another user.
Akshay Kumar’s questions to Modi had included whether the Indian prime minister ate mangoes and, if he did, whether he ate using a fork or by simply sucking them over a kitchen sink. Akshay had also expressed his awe for Modi’s ability to sleep only for little over three hours. He had asked if Modi likes jokes, his bank savings and post-retirement plans among other questions.