Mumbai: Superstar Aamir Khan's comments on growing intolerance have provoked sharp reactions on Twitter with his industry colleagues Anupam Kher and Ram Gopal Varma, berating him, asking "When did 'Incredible India' become 'Intolerant India' for you".
The 50-year-old "PK" star during his outing at an award function last evening in the national capital had said he has been "alarmed" by a number of incidents and his wife Kiran Rao even suggested that they should probably leave the country. Kher, who shared screen space with Aamir in "Dil", "Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin" among others, hit out at him saying, "India has made him what he is".
"Dear @aamir_khan. Did you ask Kiran which country would she like to move out to? Did you tell her that this country has made you AAMIR KHAN. Did you tell Kiran that you have lived through more worse times in this country but you never thought of moving out," Anupam Kher posted on Twitter.
Taking a dig at Aamir's 'Atithi Devo Bhavah' campaign and his popular TV show "Satyamev Jayate", Kher added, "Dear @aamir_khan. When did 'Incredible India' become 'Intolerant India' for you? Only in the last 7-8 months? #AtithiDevoBhavah.
"#SatyamevaJayate you talked about evil practices but gave Hope. So even in 'Intolerant' times you need to spread Hope not Fear."
Ram Gopal Varma, who gave Aamir one of his hit films of his career "Rangeela", wrote, "Some celebs complaining about Intolerance should be the last ones to complain because they became celebs in a so called intolerant country."
Actor Paresh Rawal said if Aamir believes it is his "motherland then he will never talk about leaving it". "Aamir is a fighter so he should not leave but change the situation in the country! jeena yahan marna yahan!
A true patriot will not run away and leave his motherland behind in turmoil or in troubled times (if any )... Don't escape - build it...," Rawal, who acted with him in "Andaz Apna Apna" and "Akele Hum Akele Tum", posted.
Rishi Kapoor also joined the bandwagon of celebrities slamming Aamir for his intolerance remarks. "Mr & Mrs Aamir Khan. When things are going wrong and the system needs correction, repair it, mend it. Don't run away from it. That is Heroism!," Kapoor tweeted.
Actress Raveena Tandon, who has worked with Aamir Khan in 'Andaz Apna Apna', refrained from naming Aamir but suggested that people who are not happy with Narendra Modi as the Prime Minister of India are raising the intolerance issue.
Here is what she tweeted:
Guess all those who did not want pm Modi to become PM,want 2 bring this govt down..sadly becoz of politics,they are shaming country ..— Raveena Tandon (@TandonRaveena) November 24, 2015
Fringe elements were always there,1can always say thats condemnable,action needs to be taken against them,but to spread paranoia?not done— Raveena Tandon (@TandonRaveena) November 24, 2015
Wonder why they didn't feel fear when bombs ripped the heart of mumbai.. Or our security was breached #26/11-gosh!no point same argument— Raveena Tandon (@TandonRaveena) November 24, 2015
Let's cut the BS-why can't these people openly say that they weren't happy since d day Modi became PM..instead of shaming the whole country— Raveena Tandon (@TandonRaveena) November 24, 2015
Really-have the guts to say it openly,instead of dragging the whole country's image down,I don't have a problem with any form of protest..— Raveena Tandon (@TandonRaveena) November 24, 2015
But when it comes to respecting your nation and what it has done for you ?? Before that ask yourself.. What have you done for the nation?— Raveena Tandon (@TandonRaveena) November 24, 2015
Some celebs stand up in support of Aamir Khan
While there were many people from the film fraternity who hit out at Aamir Khan, there were some who backed the 'Ghajini' star -- music composer Vishal Dadlani of the Vishal-Shekhar duo, filmmaker Sanjay Gupta and veteran award-winning director Saeed Mirza, to name a few.
Sanjay Gupta tweeted asking people to catch the full interview before forming an opinion. He points out that the star never mentions that he wants to leave India and even says that that was a disastrous statement that Kiran Rao made.
"That was a disastrous statement for Kiran to make." Aamir Khan's next line after saying that Kiran wants to leave. Hear the full interview.— Sanjay Gupta (@_SanjayGupta) November 24, 2015
https://t.co/rNzaphJvEm This is the link of the Aamir Khan interview. Please hear the whole thing before firing away your views.— Sanjay Gupta (@_SanjayGupta) November 24, 2015
THOSE ACCUSING AAMIR KHAN OF BEING INTOLERANT PL HAVE DA TOLERANCE TO WATCH DA WHOLE INTERVIEW. NOWHERE DOES HE SAY HE WANTS TO LEAVE INDIA— Sanjay Gupta (@_SanjayGupta) November 24, 2015
Vishal Dadlani said: "More power to your voice, @aamir_khan Sir! This is OUR country, it belongs to ALL Indians. Not to rabid lunatics from any party/religion. Thanks to Aamir Sir, for speaking against intolerance! Proud to see the giants of film, use their voices for India."
"Look, you have points of view. Let them be heard. I heard about the statement of Aamir Khan this morning. In fact, I read about it. He has a point of view, let it be heard. We can debate it," veteran award-winning director Saeed Mirza told IANS on the sidelines of a parallel student's film festival organised by the students of the Film and Television Institute of India in Panaji.
Filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt told a television channel: "Whatever he said was in a simple manner and what his wife told him. If people have issues and are afraid to live in India, the government should come forward and address those issues. Yes, the situation of the country has changed, it is not a political statement, it is the government's duty to listen to such voices."
Pakistani filmmaker Jamshed Mahmood Raza said: "If Aamir Khan is speaking out about intolerance and facing a backlash, the Indian actor is probably right."