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Pak actor Mawra Hocane's Phantom tweets kick up a storm

The hit film Phantom has sparked angry exchanges on social media among Pakistanis. Veteran actor Shaan Shahid launched an online campaign to ban actor and model Mawra Hocane after she tweeted Phantom was against terrorism.

bollywood Updated: Sep 01, 2015 13:43 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Phantom,Mawra Hocane,Shaan Shahid
Kabir Khan tweeted Phantom's posters.

The hit film Phantom, which features a group of Indian operatives hunting down a Hafiz Saeed-like terrorist after the Mumbai attacks, has sparked angry exchanges on social media among Pakistanis who are divided on the movie. Veteran Pakistani actor Shaan Shahid, who has acted in several films with patriotic themes that indulged in India-bashing, launched an online campaign to ban actor and model Mawra Hocane after she tweeted Phantom was against terrorism.

Mawra, who has reportedly signed three Bollywood films and was recently in India for a shoot, tweeted on Saturday: "#phantom is against terrorism. A terrorist can't belong to any country. A terrorist is a terrorist."

She followed it up with three more tweets, including one that said that if Phantom "is anti-terrorism, Then yes I'm anti-terrorism, it doesn't matter which land I belong to. I'm pro-humanity & love & that's that."

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As her comments generated a storm in Pakistan, Mawra deleted her tweets but by then Shaan, who has made a point of refusing offers from Indian producers and once refused to allow Bollywood tunes to be played on his TV show, launched an online campaign for Mawra to be banned.

Should we banned actress like her who is supporting anti pakistani movie?



Mawra was subjected to considerable abuse following Shaan's tweet and subsequently responded with a long Facebook post in which she said that Pakistan's dignity could not be challenged by a film's content alone.

Open Letter to My Fans & Mr Shan Shahid:My tweets were out of utter ignorance for I had not seen the trailer neither...

Posted by Mawra hocane on Sunday, August 30, 2015

Shaan also targeted Phantom's star Saif Ali Khan in a Facebook post, claiming that Khan was hiding his "flops behind the combined hatred of Indians for Pakistan".

Other Pakistanis defended Mawra's stance, pointing out that Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) founder Hafiz Saeed was a globally designated terrorist for whom the US has offered a $10-million bounty.

Journalist Taha Siddiqui questioned whether Pakistanis were defending their country or the LeT.

Those who saw


say its not anti Pakistan. Its anti Lashkar e Taiba. So r intellechawals in Pak defending country or LeT?

Writer Nudrrat Khawaja posted that Shaan's actions were helping increase business for Phantom.

Other prominent Pakistani users of Twitter too chipped in on the debate over Phantom. (Some relevant tweets from Raza Rumi,

other users)

Earlier this month, the Lahore High Court barred the release of Phantom in response to a petition from Hafiz Saeed, who claimed the movie contains 'filthy propaganda' against him. Saeed's lawyer had contended that there was a threat to the Jamaat-ud-Dawah leader and his associates because of the film.

First Published: Aug 31, 2015 18:34 IST