Much like the rest of the country, Bollywood is divided on the appropriate decorum regarding the escalating Indo-Pak conflict. While some like Kangana Ranaut wants everyone to wear their political opinions on their sleeves, Romeo Akbar Walter actor John Abraham would rather have people practice caution.
While responding to the accusations made by Ranaut, Alia Bhatt recently stated, “My dad always says that there are already so many opinions in the world that the world could do with one less opinion. So, I have an opinion but I will keep it to myself.” The topic that sparked this comment has got nothing to do with yet another one of Ranaut’s tirades against Karan Johar, Hrithik Roshan, or nepotism. This time Ranaut had questioned the patriotism of Bollywood celebrities like Bhatt, Ranveer Singh, and Ranbir Kapoor because of their reluctance to take any political stands publicly.
But we all know why most stars choose to remain quiet. Recently Sonam Kapoor got trolled for saying no to war, which is further proof of why celebs would rather keep their personal opinions private.
In fact, Abraham has emerged as the one voice of sanity among all the noise Ranaut has been making while basking in the commercial success of Manikarnika. Abraham, the star of last year’s Satyamev Jayate, spoke surprisingly sensibly about patriotism and jingoism, during the promotional events for Romeo Akbar Walter. A film, he insists, is not another ‘chest-thumping nationalist’ project.
Speaking about the dangers of pushing harmful stereotypes in an already polarised world, he told PTI:
“There has to be a war against terror, not against a country, region, religions or between religions. There has to be a war on terror. It has to be over and done with. That doesn’t mean you have to fight with another country. That doesn’t mean you have to stereotype people. We are stereotyping people, that’s probably the most dangerous sign. It shouldn’t happen. But that’s the way the world is functioning today.”
While responding to Ranaut’s statements dragging “apolitical” actors, here’s what Abraham said:
“But you shouldn’t be stupidly talented. You can’t be an idiot, who knows nothing about which country lies where. If you don’t know what’s happening from Bihar to Syria, then you should shut up and smile and show your mug that you have done so much work on. Don’t talk.
We have shot a lot of the film (Romeo Akbar Walter) in Kashmir. So we know what is happening there. We know what the grassroots problems are there. So we understand what’s happening there. But again, making a statement at the right time is important. Don’t make a statement for effect or to trend. I am not in the business of trending. I don’t want to trend. It’s good to show good films, educate your audience and move on with life.”
He even shut down a reporter who asked him if Romeo Akbar Walter would “tempt” people to take action after the Pulwama attacks:
“You have to be very careful with the way you ask questions, you have a responsibility. Please apologise to everyone.”