Monday, 25 May 2020

PK: Drunk On Blasphemy

Updated: January 17, 2015 8:20 am

It is now an established fact that much talked PK is a loaded film in the form of an ET comedy. PK has several scenes that hurt religious sentiments of Hindus. All self-respecting Hindus want a full stop on the defamation of Hinduism, Hindu Saints and Hindu customs in the name of liberty and rights of art and opinion. It is good that at last thick-skinned Hindus are protesting against a very biased and one sided assault against Hinduism. In one scene PK places a stone under a tree, marks it with some quick-lime (choona from his paan as tilak), and then places coins in front, to prove to the heroine’s father that he was wrong about God. Soon there were people prostrating in front of the Siva-lingam and putting notes in front of the stone placed by PK. In another scene, Aamir visits the temple with a bottle of alcohol in his hand.

Would Aamir have guts to place a nicely framed picture of the Kaaba of Mecca, or a ‘Jesus on the cross’ statue under the tree and insulting the Muslims/ Christians? Had it been done, it would have caused huge uproar and by all certainty a fatwa would have issued against Aamir Khan. This has made my blood boil. I cannot tolerate anyone making fun of the religious beliefs of my forefathers. It is the responsibility of the film censor board to see if it “could” hurt religious sentiments? Why didn’t Censor Board object to delete those scenes where they showed “god” in bad light? Were they too much awed by Aamir Khan or were they convinced like the last Censor Board Chairman. It has now come to light that two of the four members had given written objections to these scenes.

“Every film may hurt religious sentiments of somebody or the other. We can’t remove scenes unnecessarily because there is something called creative endeavour where people present things in their own way. We have given a certificate to PK and we can’t remove anything now because it is already out for public viewing,” Leela Samson, chairperson of Censor Board of Film Certification, said.

Interestingly, the Supreme Court had earlier come to the film’s aid, clearly stating that there was no need to ban the film at all. The apex court had earlier rejected the plea to ban the film, and instead asked viewers to “not watch the film,” if they had qualms with its sentiment and presentation. “If you don’t like it, don’t watch the film. Don’t bring religious facets here,” Chief Justice Lodha had said. Freedom of Expression surely does not mean hurting someone’s sentiments.

While the Hindu protest against PK is unleashing abundantly, senior BJP leader L K Advani’s appreciation for the movie rubbed some salts to the wounds of a section of Hindu protesters. Even the All India Muslim Personal Law Board’s Maulana Khalid Rashid Firangi Mahali has said that the Censor Board should remove the scenes to ensure that communal harmony is not disturbed. If a movie had material that hurt religious sentiments, especially when it is acted by a Muslim Aamir Khan, who plays a Hindu character, it could be taken otherwise,” the Maulana said. The Sikhs too have complained that the film has shown a Sikh as a beggar. Sikhs never beg.

Conspiracy theories were floated, too. Subramanian Swamy too ignited a fresh controversy by stating that Rajkumar Hirani’s directorial has been funded by ISI. The BJP leader has also asked Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) to investigate the source of the film’s funds.

“Indian voting rights (given to Hindus) must be reconsidered,” said Zoya Hasan, a professor of political science in JNU on the morning of May 16th this year at the NDTV studio. We hear noises from the Opposition in both the houses of Parliament on topics concerning some “reconversions” by a vague Hindu outfit or about a stray ruling party MP making some bombastic comments on some trivial religious matters. Over the last month, maximum airtime on various media platforms was allocated to a ‘colloquial’ mis-comment by a junior minister in the central government which was a classic case of making a mountain out of a molehill.

Over the last few years, especially under constant ridicule and persistent attack have been religious figures, Hindu Muths and those termed derisively as ‘Godmen’ by the media. The relentless bombardment on 24/7 news channels against various babas from Nithyanandas to Asharam Bapus to Rampals is not enough to change the Hindu psyche, creative Bollywood directors are now getting into this business of abusing Hindu systems. Films like these should be stopped and the character of institutions like sensor Board, which approve such movies, should be corrected. The vilification of Hindutva is now a trend of the so-called elite and secular section of people in Bollywood in recent times.

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