Gurmehar Kaur row: Vidya Balan bats for freedom of expression; Madhur Bhandarkar hits back at Javed Akhtar

Delhi University's student Gurmehar Kaur's photo criticising ABVP sparked a new controversy and it seems the row will not die any time soon

The controversy after DU student Gurmehar Kaur took a stand against Akhil Bhartiya Vishwa Parishad (ABVP) refuses to die anytime soon. Her stand of ABVP has sparked new debates and has received many opinions. Now actress Vidya Balan has expressed her opinion on the matter and has said that everyone has a right to express themselves. The Kahaani 2 actress was asked about this at a book launch event in Mumbai yesterday.

“What we need to really respect is everyone’s individuality, [I] don’t want to comment more but I think everyone should have the freedom to express, and I am totally against any kind of violence,” Vidya Balan reportedly said.

The daughter of martyr Capt. Mandeep Singh, Gurmehar found herself caught in a row when she posted a picture saying she wasn’t afraid of ABVP after the party allegedly took to violence in the premises of Ramjas College. Soon, a video of her in which she said her father died because of war and not Pakistan, went viral. This video of hers garnered mixed responses from every nook and corner.

Also read: Editor’s Rant: 5 quick ways to shut up Gurmehar Kaur from ABVP playbook

While the likes of Pooja Bhatt, Shirish Kunder, Vishal Dadlani and Shruti Seth said freedom of speech is a basic right, others including Randeep Hooda and Virender Sehwag were accused of trolling the 20-year-old.

Also read: 5 statements that Kiren Rijiju has made on Gurmehar Kaur in the last 24 hours that just don’t make sense

Not only Sehwag, sportspersons like Geeta and Babita Phogat and Yogeshwar Dutt too took to social media to come down heavily on Gurmehar. All this turmoil, prompted Javed Akhtar to post a series of tweets on the matter. Taking a dig at the sportspersons, the renowned writer wrote on Twitter, “If a hardly literate player or a wrestler troll a pacifist daughter of a martyr, it’s understandable but what’s wrong with some educated folks.”

To this tweet of Javed Akhtar, the popular director of Bollywood Madhur Bhandarkar replied, that education has nothing to do with a right to express an opinion. He tweeted: