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Wednesday, January 10, 2007

CM Modi & Democracy

CM Narendar Modi and Democracy
May 28 2006 10:39PM comments rss:


Mahatma Gandhi would have joined Medha Patekar, Arundhati Roy and Aamir Khan to protest against disturbing the lives of ordinary people due to the dam construction.

Where ever we have responsible governments, there is thing called eminent domain, where property can be taken from property owners for the public good. But a compensation is made financially or help them rehabilitate if they do not own the properties.

Citizens of Gujarat have been deprived of a movie, any movie for that matter. Those who oppose Medha, Arundhati or Aamir have a right not to see the film, but do not have the right to prevent others from seeing it.

I hope CM Modi will defend the constitution of the state and the rights of Indians to protest. That is one of the fundamental rights given to every individual in our constitution. I hope CM Modi will ensure freedom of businesses to show the movie and protect the citizens who want to see the movie. I have advocated showing the movies from Muhammad to Da-Vinci code to the movie water.

As a democracy, we should welcome all dissent, suppressing dissent is anti-Indian. Whether we agree with the dissenter or not, we should honor and respect the right to dissent. Without dissent I don't know what kind of government we would have had.

Fanaaing Fanaa film will create a black market for it, and that is not good for India. However, the film will do well elsewhere. Indians have always been on the right side.

Democracy and respect for different paths is in our veins.
Dictatorship is not for us.

Mike Ghouse

'What Should I Apologise For?'
Calm, a little philosophical, but resolute, the star says in an interview from Madrid that he has no regrets about his stance, and that he won't say sorry
NAMRATA JOSHI interviews Aamir Khan

He was in Spain, attending a friend's wedding and participating in the Imagine India film festival, when Fanaa's producer Aditya Chopra and director Kunal Kohli informed Aamir Khan about the ban imposed on his latest release by cinema associations in Gujarat, allegedly under pressure from the BJP. The BJP Yuva Morcha has been demanding that Aamir apologise to the people of Gujarat for his "anti-Gujarat" stand in support of the Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA) and his "anti-Narendra Modi" remarks. Calm, a little philosophical, but resolute, the star told Namrata Joshi in an interview from Madrid that he has no regrets about his stance, and that he won't say sorry.Did you anticipate the stalling of Fanaa?Earlier, when I decided to support the NBA, the BJP stopped the screening of Rang De Basanti in Gujarat and forcibly took it off the screens. So certainly, there were chances that they might do so with Fanaa.They are opposing your stand as anti-Gujarat, anti-development...I'm doing what I feel is right. I did what I felt was right. I stand by it. My concern was for the rehabilitation of the farmers and the adivasis who would be deprived of their homes. What's wrong with voicing this concern? Is the BJP trying to say it is not for rehabilitation, that no compensation should be given to a farmer who stands to lose his land?Media reports say the protest has also been prompted by certain remarks you made against Narendra Modi...For a few hours that he went on fast, I had said that when he breaks his fast and puts food in his mouth he should remember that the food has been grown by farmers. If that truth is difficult to swallow, if it's reason for them to come on so strong and powerful, then so be it.Last year, I also spoke about the Gujarat genocide on the programme Walk the Talk on NDTV. I had said that people killed in Godhra and its aftermath were not Hindus or Muslims for me. They were Indians, and whoever was responsible for the carnage was anti-Indian and anti-national. If that was the reason for this (ban), so be it.How does it affect the film and you as a star?The losses would be above Rs 5 crore. But that's a separate issue. I'm not thinking about how it would affect me as a star. The issue here is of the concept of democracy. If the people of Gujarat are annoyed with me, they have the choice not to go to the theatre, not to see my film, not to support me. But it's wrong for any organisation to use its might to force them into it.A lot of time, money and effort have gone into a film and then the audience doesn't get to watch it...It's unfortunate. People do find ways to watch a film if they want to, but there would still be huge financial losses. And, what about people losing their land and houses? I think that's a far bigger, deeper issue.What action do you plan to take now?In life, nothing is in our control. The maximum we can do is to do what we believe is right. I strongly believe that each one of us has to fulfil our karma, to do what he or she feels is right. The BJP should do what it feels is right, the people of Gujarat and India should do what they feel is right.There are many avenues I could take recourse to. There is the legal option, I could seek help from the film industry and the various film associations, but on this issue I want the people to decide. The people should decide if this is the kind of political party they want. It's an indication of how the BJP can use violence and force. Not just can-they are doing it and intend to keep doing it. The BJP is a political party that has time and again believed in using brute force.They have no value for human life. The BJP is a strong entity. It can do much worse than what it has already been doing.Would you have a dialogue with the protesters?Why should we? It should be their decision, not ours.Would you apologise?What should I apologise for? What wrong have I done? I am happy and proud of what I did.

Cut 2 crore from my fees for Fanaa
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Aamir Khan asks Yash Raj to slash his remuneration to make up for losses in Gujarat, where the film hasn't released after his verbal clash with BJP
Kunal Shah
Aamir Khan has asked Yash Raj Films to cut Rs 2 crore from his remuneration for Fanaa because of the losses the producers are likely to face as a result of the film not releasing in Gujarat.This unprecedented gesture was made by the actor in the wake of the BJP youth wing's strong protests against the film, which ensured that Fanaa did not hit theatres in the state on Friday. Though there is no official ban in place, exhibitors across Gujarat have decided against screening the film in any of the multiplexes or single-screen theatres.The BJP is protesting Khan's support of the Narmada Bachao Aandolan, but he has refused to apologise for his statement that the dam oustees should be adequately compensated. "Aamir feels the controversy surrounding his remarks has affected the film, and he thinks he has disappointed the film-makers. So he called up Aditya Chopra (the producer) and requested him to cut Rs 2 crore from his remuneration. He said he did not want the film to suffer losses because of him," a source in Yash Raj who did not wish to be named said.According to Gujarat exhibitor D Y Patni, who controls the maximum number of cinema halls in the state, "The film is bound to lose at least Rs one crore in the first week itself. This means losses for Yash Chopra."Though Aamir Khan and Aditya Chopra were not available for comment, sources said the actor is estimated to have charged between Rs 4 and Rs 8 crore for the film.Asked about Aamir's offer to slash his remuneration, the film's director Kunal Kohli said: "I am not involved with the finances, so I'm unaware of the remuneration part. But it is a very normal thing for Aamir to make such an offer. He is known to make such gestures, though I think Aditya may not agree to it at all."Shatrughan Sinha, while criticising Aamir's stand, had alleged in Patna on Friday that the actor was "harming' the interests of the film-makers and other members of the cast.


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