Amid tension in the wake of Uri terror attack, the MNS led by Raj Thackeray on Friday asked Pakistani artistes like Fawad Khan to leave immediately, failing which their shootings will be stalled. Actors like Mahira Khan (starring Shah Rukh Khan-starrer ‘Raees‘) and “Ae Dil Hai Mushkil” star Fawad Khan are hijacking the opportunities of Indian artistes, Shalini Thackeray, wife of MNS chief Raj Thackeray, said in a press conference.
She said these two actors have been served the ultimatum to leave the country. In Karan Johar’s “Ae Dil Hai Mushkil”, which is slated to release next month, Fawad is in a supporting role Mahira plays the lead role opposite SRK in ‘Raees’.
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However, Mumbai police has assured the actors that they need not worry as they will be given protection. Shalini, who is the general secretary of MNS,said that their Chitrapat wing has issued a 48-hour ultimatum to all the Pakistani actors to leave the country. “We have started dashing off letters to Pakistani actors, whose country is allegedly sponsoring terrorism, to stop their acting business here.
“We would also issue letters to the producers on what grounds they are hiring the Pakistani actors when there are an ample number of actors here in the country and struggling to find an opportunity,” she said.
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In a country of 1.25 billion people where lakhs and crores struggle a lot for an opportunity to be launched in movies, these big brands are giving the opportunity to Pakistani artistes, she added.
To a query on what MNS would do if the Pakistani artistes don’t leave, Thackeray said, “Our workers would push them out… would not let them do their acting business
Mumbai police have, however, given an assurance to the actors not to worry. “All foreign nationals who land in the country with valid documents issued by the Government of India and the Government of Maharashtra need not worry,” Joint Commissioner of Police (law and order), Mumbai, Deven Bharti said.
Bharti also said that police will give proper protection to them as and when required. Commenting on the development, Dharma Productions, which has produced “Ae Dil Hai Mushkil”, said it has to understand what the issue is about. “We have not come across anything yet. If there is an issue, we need to understand the matter first, so we cannot comment anything,” an official from Dharma Productions said.
The calls and messages to the makers of “Raees” did not elicit any response. This is not the first time that Pakistani artistes have been threatened in Mumbai. Last year, noted Pakistani ghazal singer Ghulam Ali had to cancel his performance in Mumbai after Shiv Sena threatened him.