Punish Emran Hashmi – Tarun Vijay

via http://blogs.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/indus-calling/entry/punish-emraan published on August 10, 2009

Last week I was on a TV discussion on a famous channel with Shabana Azmi, Mahesh Bhatt and Emraan Hashmi, the complainant who said he was denied an apartment because of his faith. He could not provide a single instance that would substantiate his arguments. I was pained to see that instead of upholding the values of a justifiable secularism and fairness, these celebrities wanted to buy a few headlines through cheap gimmicks and didn’t mind vitiating the communal atmosphere. They virtually had no argument, no facts to prove their so-called grievances, yet tried to humiliate and belittle a majority that has been so supportive of their careers and given them unlimited love without considering which religion they belong to. That they will return the love of people by maligning them speaks of their own deep-rooted prejudices against the majority.

Emraan Hashmi, who didn’t get fame through excellence in acting but by a stunt of kisses, has done a male Rakhi Sawant on the nation with gullible people watching in shock and a trivialized media lapping it up as a five-rupee ice candy. To such a shameless person who earned money and headlines with the majority Hindu support and showed the temerity to abuse them so fictitiously for the apparent reasons to buy media coverage for his coming movie, a severe punishment must be given charging him of vitiating the communal atmosphere and provoking hatred among people who are already fatigued with post-terror-strike trauma. In a country where the biggest house of the land — the Rashtrapati Bhavan — and the chief minister’s bungalow in Mumbai had been occupied by Muslims, Hashmi raised a fictitious issue to malign the majority and the land for cheap publicity. Nobody would object if the housing society is found guilty and punished, but what if Hashmi is proved a liar? Shouldn’t he be given an exemplary punishment simply because he wanted to kill the residual harmonious relations between the communities?

In any case, every house owner and a community-based society reserves the right to decide whom to sell or rent out property it owns. Like in Delhi and other cities, the feelings based on biradari or community bonds matter more than anything else. There are colonies for journalists and it’s very difficult, if not impossible, for a non-media person to get a house there. In IAS officers’ colonies, an IFS officer finds it difficult to get a house. It’s the biradari feeling; everyone likes to live in a group with which he shares the worldview and can communicate. Likewise Punjabis face problems in finding a house on rent in many Delhi localities and in a Muslim-dominated area Hindus won’t be entertained — see the Okhla-Batla House locality. Many houseowners won’t rent out their property to meat-eaters even if they are Hindus and in some areas Tamils and Bengalis are preferred for being cool and peaceful, while in other areas they are not. So should it become mandatory for everyone to sell or rent out his property to anyone liking it? It’s an obscene proposition. One can try to change the communal biases through various other means but the way Hashmi has chosen. Persons like Hashmi give a bad name to their community also by raising such petty issues as a cover for advance publicity for their coming movies. Hence all Muslims and Hindus alike, in a show of solidarity that upholds values of the Indian tricolour, must refuse a house for a communally hateful Hashmi in Maharashtra for at least a year. That will serve as a deterrent for other “Rakhi Sawants” also who raised the issue of woman’s dignity — and earned publicity — through Women’s Rights Commission, etc, gained a hefty fee rise in the tinsel market and of course more roles.

Of late a tendency to use secularism for ruffling Hindu sensitivities has been dangerously on the rise. Someone has to work out a balance and mark a point where all such largesses would end. One segment of our society gets — on purely religious grounds — government reservations, special bank loans, segregated universities which receive huge amounts of grants from Saudi Arabia and Iran and open special centres to encourage learning about a world that breeds Taliban and terrorists. And collect donations to help those who have been accused by Delhi police as waging a war against the nation. Have you ever wondered why Muslim universities are always tagged to the Arab world and never think to have special centres to study our neighbouring countries like Nepal and Sri Lanka which have closer and friendlier civilisational ties with India? Why always the language and culture of those areas which have sent attackers and marauders to India find a warm heart on such campuses? Why not a Thai, a Laosian or a Cambodian study centre?

Every Khan in Bollywood lives on the money and popularity earned from non-discriminatory Indian people that goes beyond religious fault lines but not a single Khan has ever raised his voice in favor of justice to Hindus in any incident that involved their brutalization by jihadis or like-minded extremist elements. An unconfirmed incident of an “apartment sell refusal” becomes a national issue as the media take it up, simply because a Muslim was involved. But never, even for once, has a Muslim taken up the cause of Kashmiri Hindus ousted from their ancestral property in Kashmir and exiled to live as refugees in their own independent motherland called India. Neither a Shabana nor a Mahesh Bhatt raised his voice against the refusal of Kashmiri Muslim leaders to give “even an inch of land” to Amarnath pilgrims, for yatra camps. There are Muslims who win elections from Hindu majority constituencies, yet would not hesitate to hit at Hindu sentiments. Should that be taken as a token of their secularism? Why can’t we have the spirit of Indianism above all boundaries?

These celebrities are taking Hindu sentiments for granted and think that their acting style would cover their communal prejudices. It comes out on occasions like the Hashmi episode.

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