Tag Archives: shah rukh khan

We Are All Shah Rukh Khan

my name is khan

Theatrical Poster of MNIK

I get intensely agitated as I read about Shiv Sena anarchy in Mumbai. Such is the level of my distant yet emotional involvement in the ongoing Shah Rukh Khan-Shiv Sena standoff that, as it happens with most of the Nepali people, I want to give a tight slap to the freaking gang-lord called Balasaheb. The film My Name Is Khan will be released tomorrow and vowing to let the screening not happen the Sena has already vandalized some theaters that opened advance bookings prompting the state government to deploy heavy security in theaters. I am filled with anger to see the right-wing ‘political’ gang of Bal Thackeray targeting a vulnerable actor for saying nothing but the truth. Reports say Indian Rs 1 billon (100 crore) is at stake for the filmwallahs.

Fox Star Studios acquired the distribution rights of the movie for about Rs. 81 crore, including prints and publicity. “The film has to net at least Rs 60 crore in India to recover the investment,” said trade analyst Amod Mehra. “The Mumbai circuit with Maharashtra contributes about 40 pr cent of the country’s total collections, which would be Rs 20 odd crore minimum.” Komal Nahta, a trade veteran, said, “Approximately Rs 2.5 to 3 crore per day is at stake in Mumbai city and Maharashtra. Although Karan Johar and Shah Rukh Khan have sold the film to Fox Star, it doesn’t mean that their responsibility is over. At a press conference in London, Shah Rukh apologised to Karan and Fox Star and promised that he would make up for the losses they might incur because of the stand he’s taken.” (source)

That makes Shiva Sena even more powerful making them think: See, we can damage you that much. It’s clear the group wants cheap attention. I know trillions of people in Mumbai don’t like Sena. They hate the fascist organization. So what can they do now? Continue reading

Shah Rukh Khan: Don’t Apologize to Shiv Sena

Update (04-Jan): Speaking in London where he is promoting his movie My Name is Khan, Shah Rukh Khan today said:

“I don’t know what the issue is all about…I don’t know what I am supposed to retract. Am I supposed to retract the fact I’m an Indian but I don’t want anyone to come to my country. What all that I’ve said is that I would like people to come to my country to participate in the biggest event and it scarce me to say anything because our stakes are very high. I have no idea what people would like me to say. If somebody could tell me this is what you would want me to say, I’ll say it. What all I have been taught by my father who was a freedom fighter for this country is wrong and my kids are steering wrong. It’s not a stand or a statement against anyone. It’s actually a sort of what I individually feel and normally when a film is releasing-to be really honest and I wouldn’t comment on it on a larger scale because it’s not nice when a Hindi film hero who is thought of as an icon, to say this. I am really sorry. I would like to apologise Karan Johar, to Kajol and I am immensely sorry to all our business partners that because of what I said, or what I believe in, their film and their work is going to be affected.”Karan Johar, producer and director of the film and co-star Kajol were present. (source)

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We’ll Watch Your Movie Twice

There are limits to political hooliganism. The two ‘political’ gangs of Mumbai- Shiv Sena and Maharastra Navanirman Sena- have crossed those limits more than once. The Indian state and its much revered Democracy are mute spectators of the Sena anarchy. It is shameful that the Senas have taken the city of Mumbai hostage and rest of India is unable to do anything. So much with the super-power dream of new India.

I am not an Indian but as an admirer of Indian democracy, lover of Indian movies and songs and observer of Indian politics, I find the Shiv Sena’s latest threat to Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan absolutely preposterous and downright condemnable. So many other people, inside India and outside, share the same feeling. Yet, as of today, Khan finds himself virtually isolated. No one, not even from his own film industry, is daring to speak for him who expressed nothing but truth while commenting upon the recent IPL fiasco. Khan had recently regretted publicly saying that it was humiliating for him as an IPL team owner that no Pakistani cricketers was taken by any of the teams despite the fact that several talented Pakistani players were up for auction. He also praised the Pakistani cricket team, current T20 world champions, as being, well, the world champions.

I see nothing wrong with that. The Shiva Sena sees nothing right in that. They feel the actor shouldn’t have praised Pakistani players and expressed regret over their exclusion from the tournament because, according to them, it’s a matter of patriotism. Now the Sena is demanding that Khan should either retract from his statement (apologize) or go to Pakistan, as in leaving India for good. As if India belonged exclusively to the Thackeray clan and their goons at the Senas.

It is clear why Shiv Sena is targeting Shah Rukh. Shah Rukh Khan, the mega star of Indian film industry, is a Muslim. Shiva Sena, who plays the politics of Marathi Manoos, is a right-wing ultra-Hindutva outfit. That is the sole reason for the latest Sena outrage against Khan who has the right, constitutionally speaking, to say what he said in Indian democracy. The Sena’s act is clearly an example of religious chauvinism and highhandedness. Look at this statement by Shiv Sena leader Manohar Joshi, a former speaker of Indian parliament: Continue reading

IPL is not India-Pakistan League

Pakistanis should know that the I in IPL stands for Indian, not International. And the P definitely doesn’t stand for Pakistan. IPL is not the India-Pakistan League. It’s purely an Indian Premier League of cricket. A tournament for the Indians, by the Indians and of the Indians. I am amazed by the responses of some Pakistanis who feel so humiliated because none of the Pakistani players who were up for auction were picked up by IPL franchises. If there was indeed an Indian conspiracy, as pointed out by some in Pakistan, then no one but the ISI should be blamed. The spy agency should have known this beforehand. Certainly before the Pakistan government cleared the players the Indian tournament.

It is no surprise that given an opportunity many Indians would always try and want to humiliate and defeat Pakistan. What do we hear about Pakistan in India? The media is generally filled with skeptical/negative reports/propaganda about Pakistan. I am sure same happens about India in Pakistan. Many Indians have no fair idea about the society of a country that is so much talked about in media for negative reasons. There’s frightening lack of information about Pakistan in the world’s largest democracy. I am sure same applies with Pakistanis with regard to information about India. There are always some people on both sides of the border who want to play the nationalistic politics. They are celebrating now.

There are some people in India who talk good about Pakistan and my sense is that many of those folks were genuinely troubled by the IPL rejection of Pakistani players. Shah Rukh Khan, Bollywood actor and owner of IPL team Kolkata Knight Riders, today told India’s NDTV that it was, in fact, “humiliating” for him “as a KKR owner that this has happened. We are known to be good, we are known to invite everyone, and we should have. And if there were any issues, they should have been put out earlier so that everything could happen respectfully.”

Here’s a very interesting observation made by Shah Rukh Khan in the same NDTV interview (video):

“I am not giving an excuse and I truly believe Pakistani players are the best T20 players in the world. They are the champions. They are wonderful. But somewhere down the line there is an issue and we cannot deny it. There is an issue, we cannot keep saying ‘Oh this was wrong’. Yes maybe the way it was done was wrong, the way it is being carried out may be wrong. But you can’t keep on saying ‘Koi issue nahi hai yaar, woh aa jate’ (There isn’t any issue, they could have come). There is an issue lets not deny it. Every day we blame Pakistan, everyday they blame us, it is an issue,” he added.

So true. The blame game is because of lack of fair information about each other, I guess. Both societies need to open up themselves to people from other society and promote exchange of ideas. As their neighbor, we can only wish they came closer and worked towards the progress of the region.

Om Shanti Om: No Shah Rukh No

Eye on Bollywood: My first choice for the day was Saawaria by Sanjay Leela Bhansali but ended up with Om Shanti Om (second in the list, by Farah Khan). I definitely do not regret watching it but there is no question that I will remember it for long: it’s just another masaladar Hindi film.

This is not a review of the Om Shanti Om but my personal impression. I am disappointed for I spent Rs. 100 (and other expenses like coffee and bus fare to the theater) for the movie, spent almost three hours of my time on the day of Laxmi Pooja (for the film) when people sing and dance beautiful bhailos. I had thought the film would be dealing with something very new, fresh drama. Only thing I loved about the movie was: the smile of Deepika Padukone, the lady who plays opposite to Shah Rukh Khan. She is too beautiful (or presented as such) and at times that becomes the problem. Even when she is supposed to show anger and be angry, she can’t. She just looks like a sweet little doll. Continue reading