Manoj ‘bharat’ Kumar finds smiling a deeply unpatriotic gesture. After all, the screen legend (sic) who was commissioned by Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shashtri to make a film on the slogan, Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan (with the result of him playing jawan and kisan in the 1967 Upkar) is not the type who’d find anything amusing about being gently lampooned in another movie. Which is pretty much what was done in a scene in Farah Khan’s playful and delightful homage to the Indian film industry in Om Shanti Om (OSO). But Mr Bharat has now gone to court seeking that the film be never shown on television. Is he being a cranky old patriot? Or is he just hamming as usual?
That both Farah and Shah Rukh Khan had publicly apologised to ‘Uncleji’ about the scene — simply to make him less crochety — did not satisfy Mr Mere Desh ki Dharti. That the quality of humour is not strained in OSO is something that will elude the Patriot, formerly known as Harikishen Goswami.
He wants the TV screening of OSO to be blocked as a telecast would “greatly harm” his reputation. Hmm. We can see those hordes turning their backs to Purab aur Paschim because of OSO on telly.