Maharashtra Navnirman Chitrapat Karmachari Sena, the film wing of the Raj Thackeray-led MNS, on Wednesday made it clear that there will be no let up in their earlier hardliner stance and they will stall the release of every film that has Pakistani actors in it. The party also denied reports of Salman Khan calling up MNS supremo Raj Thackeray and termed the rumours as false.
Addressing a press conference, Amey Khopkar, President of Maharashtra Navnirman Chitrapat Karmachari Sena said, “We had given Pakistani artists 48 hours to leave the country. Today not a single Pakistani artist is in the country. Whether they have gone back to Pakistan or Dubai, what matters is they are not in India. Our protests are not yet over. I respect Zee’s Subash Chandraji for stopping all Pakistani serials on Zindagi channel. I also thank Pahlaj Nihalani for his support and Colors channel for agreeing not to take any Pakistani artists in Comedy Nights Bachao and Bigg Boss. I thank Radio Mirchi for supporting us and stopping Atif Aslam’s program. The day Pakistan stops terrorist attacks only then will we extend our hand of friendship. After the attacks, none of these Pakistani actors condemned it. We are not protesting against art and cinema, we are protesting against Pakistani actors.”
Remaining firm on their earlier stance of stalling the release of every movie starring Pakistani artists, Amey said, “We have no enmity with either Karan Johar or Shah Rukh Khan. Our issue is with the Pakistani artists. Pakistani actors condemned and expressed sympathy when Paris attacks happened. But what about Uri attacks? We will protest every Indian film that has Pakistani actors in it. We will not allow such films to release. In Pakistan, our channels are banned. You all know what happened with director Kabir Khan in Pakistan. The same happened during one of Sonu Nigam’s shows there. We thank Raju Shrivastava and Abhijeet for cancelling their shows. Our protest is strong and many have tried to contact us but there will be no compromise from our end.”
Reiterating her earlier position, Shalini Thackeray general secretary of MNS Chitrapat Karamchari Sena said, “We thank people for all their support. However, with the return of Fawad Khan, our protest hasn’t ended. We won’t allow any Pakistani actors or players to work here. We won’t allow Karan Johar’s Ae Dil Hai Mushkil to release. Whoever is supporting Karan Johar, be it Varun Dhawan or Sushant Singh, where were they when jawans were dying? After Uri attacks, the government didn’t do anything. The moment we said ban Pakistani actors, sympathy has started flowing in. Also this news about Salman Khan having called up Raj Thackeray is false.”
Shalini also thanked people for supporting the party’s stand against Pakistani actors. “Seventy percent people on social media have supported us. We won’t allow the release of any film that has Pakistani actors in it. Karan has asked if by banning Pakistani actors terrorism will stop? Let me tell him that country comes first and art later. We have also sent a letter to Red Chillies in this matter.”