The developments pertaining to the release of “Ae Dil Hai Mushkil”, featuring Pakistani actor Fawad Khan, were “horrible, ruthless and have rubbed salt into the wounds of martyred soldiers”, Shiv Sena on Monday said taking a dig at Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis.
On 22 October, under pressure from political and other outfits, Bollywood film producers announced that they will not engage with Pakistani artistes, clearing decks for the smooth release of Karan Johar’s “Ae Dil Hai Mushkil” as MNS withdrew its threat to stall the screening.
Johar accompanied by Producers’ Guild President Mukesh Bhatt had met Fadnavis at his home ‘Varsha’ in South Mumbai here where Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray, whose party has been opposing the release, was also present.
“A lot has happened behind the curtains and all opposition to the film was diluted in the cup of tea at ‘Varsha’. We do not want to get into who lost and who won but the whole episode has insulted our martyred soldiers,” the Sena said in an editorial in party mouthpiece ‘Saamana’.
“(BJP) Central leaders are threatening Pakistan and boasting about surgical strikes. But none of them have the courage to say that films having Pakistani artistes will not be allowed to be released. Pakistan has violated ceasefire around 25 times after the surgical strikes and nobody is bothered about it. Here, everyone is rallying behind film producers seeing them in trouble,” it said.
As per the editorial, Fadnavis had the opportunity to show that there is a “56-inch chest” government in place now, that has much more spine than the previous-Congress led government, which was “pro-Pakistan.”
“Masks of many came off after the tea session at ‘Varsha’. Karan Johar was asked to pay Rs 5 crore to the Army welfare fund in lieu of release of his film. Is the sacrifice of our soldiers worth this much? The developments of the entire episode is horrible, ruthless and have rubbed salt into the wounds of martyred soldiers,” the Sena said.
“Ae Dil Hai Mushkil” starring Ranbir Kapoor, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Anushka Sharma in lead roles, will release on 28 October.
(With inputs from PTI)