Even before the release of Aamir Khan’s forthcoming Peepli Live, the action surrounding the tiny village Peepli, situated near Aligarh, is already becoming a cause for concern.
Khan, the producer of the film, was on his way to the village yesterday, in response to an invitation he received from the sarpanch (village head) last week.
But according to Khan’s spokesperson, a law and order situation has resulted in strict orders to keep the star away. Reportedly, over 30,000 farmers are currently stationed in a village called Tappal, situated eight kilometers away from the village the actor was to visit. They are protesting against the acquisition of their land at unacceptably low prices by the government.
It all began with the acquisition of one farmer’s property, which then snowballed into the current situation. Khan says, “I wanted to go and visit Peepli as I have received invitations from the people. But unfortunately, due to some unforeseen security concerns, I have been advised not to go there by local authorities.”
The agitation in Tappal began on Tuesday, and reportedly worsened over few hours. Villages in the neighbouring areas have also been kept on high alert. The area’s police forces have been stationed next to the mob, says Khan’s spokesperson, citing a faxed copy of the letter send by the administration of Tappal to the Khar police station, situated near the actor’s office.
Interestingly, the film, Peepli Live itself is a satire on the government’s relations with villagers in a fictional state.