Hindutva posturing and threats of violence are becoming the order of the day. The epicenter is not Gujarat but Ayodhya. Mahant Paramhans Acharya of Tapasvi Chhavni, allegedly threatened that he would go to the extent of burning Shah Rukh Khan alive if he ever met him. He claimed that the saffron color has been ‘insulted’ in the ‘Besharam Rang’ song. “People of our Sanatan Dharma are protesting continuously regarding this. Today we have burnt the poster of Shahrukh Khan. If I get to meet the film Jihadi Shah Rukh Khan, I will burn him alive,” he added.
Seething with contemptuous rage, Paramhans did not stop only at that. He went on to say that if the ‘Pathaan’ film is released in theatres, he would set them on fire. He also appealed to people to boycott the film ‘Pathaan’. Earlier, the priest of Hanuman Garhi, Mahant Raju Das, had also protested against the film. Many more may follow suit till the film is released or not released.
Many politicians and right-wing extremists are protesting and threatening over saffron-colored outfits worn by bold Bollywood actress Deepika Padukone in the song ‘Besharam Rang’ in the film. Many Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) ruled states have threatened to ban the film Pathan if the ‘Besharam’ song is not removed from the film. Prominent among those who have taken strong objection to the song is Narottam Mishra, Home Minister of Madhya Pradesh.
There is a one-sided narrative from the Hindutva brigade. If Bollywood makes anti-Muslim movies, those movies are made entertainment tax-free in their selected states. The bundle of lies and deceit – The Kashmir Files, which was not based on facts was even promoted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as for him Hindutva and the BJP come before and not the nation. Despite all the suffering by the Kashmiri pundits no concrete steps are taken on the ground for their protection but brownie points are scored and huge profits are made at their expense. The Kashmiri pundits continue to be gunned down by the terrorists.
The Muslim rulers are not just demonized in the rewriting of history with utter lies and distortions but they form the hate fodder of some Bollywood films. It may be recalled that the film on Sultan Alauddin Khilji had the same heroine Deepika Padukone. It did roaring business due to the spread of hate and contempt against the ruler and the demonized community. Now, Deepika is also demonized and dubbed as a member of the illusionary ‘Tukde Tukde’ gang.
The problem with the Hindutva extremists is that they do not accept court verdicts and even censor boards if anything goes against their perceived Hindutva interests. Do colors have religions? Who gives the power to anybody to distribute colors to different faiths and communities? No religious texts assign colors to their followers.
Actually, Muslims have a rightful grouse that the Muslim community in general, and the Pathaans, in particular, are portrayed in poor light. Sensibly, no Muslim leader has given threats either to Shah Rukh Khan or to burn down the theatres. Why do the hardcore extremists monopolize the saffron color? Hadhrat Khaja Moinuddin Chishti, the most prominent Sufi, used to wear saffron color. Saffron is the color of the Sufis. But, they never monopolized it.
Saffron is the composite color of India’s unity and harmony. If Pathaan is banned, it should be due to the obscenity content and nothing else. Let Deepika cover her bo*bs and valley. Surely, it is better to cover flesh and sell talent!