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War of words continues

entertainment Updated: Dec 14, 2009 17:14 IST

Hindustan Times
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Filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt has spoken out against singer Abhijeet Bhattacharya. In a recent interview to HT City, Abhijit had demanded an inquiry against filmmakers Mahesh Bhatt, Mukesh Bhatt and Pooja Bhatt “for importing artists from Pakistan on a tourist visa and then committing a crime by letting them stay here”.

Responding to the story, which appeared in HT City on December 12, Bhatt has written to the paper, “I only feel sad for artistes like Abhijeet. When you talk about art, you talk about emotions, sur, melodies, that transcend borders, and yet you indulge in the most perverse kind of rhetoric because it kind of serves your politics. Do you know Abhijeet has gone to Pakistan four times and given passionate speeches from the dias urging the people of both countries to trancend the politics of hate? It only pains me to see him do the complete opposite here at home. It is not the terrorists from outside who will destroy India, it is the terrorist within. I can fight a Kasab. How can I fight an Abhijeet who masquerades as my own? Who pretends to be an artist.”

Responding to Abhijeet’s allegations that the Bhatt family “is importing artists from Pakistan with a motive”, Mahesh writes, “I have also given singers from Nepal and Bangladesh an opportunity to sing in my films. Why does he not mention that? Is it because it does not suit his politics of disinformation? When it comes to national security, my son and I will be more than willing to co-operate. But don’t you have an eye to differentiate between a witness and a suspect? There are hundreds who are being questioned, but no one talks about them because they are not celebrity kids. When your own fraternity, a member of it, someone who sits with you, eats with you, somebody who does a gesture of pranam to you indulges in this kind of loose talk, it kind of saddens you. This is what a terrorist wanted to do. Destroy the peace, camaraderie and harmony. And he has succeeded. I forgive Abhijeet for throwing a brick at me. Because I truly believe that we can’t carve out a future without forgiveness.”