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Doctors protest against Ash’s smoking scene

Posters of the film Guzaarish showing actor Aishwarya Rai-Bachchan smoking have got city doctors riled.

mumbai Updated: Nov 20, 2010 16:18 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times

Posters of the film Guzaarish showing actor Aishwarya Rai Bachchan smoking have got city doctors riled.

About 1,500 doctors from Mumbai, attached to Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors (MARD), gathered at KEM Hospital and pinned black ribbons to their white robes to protest against the poster.

The protest received support from Indian Medical Association, Mumbai, and Doctors for You, a non-government organistaion.

MARD is expecting to get support from total 3,500 member doctors of MARD from across the states.

MARD has also written to Aishwarya Rai-Bachchan, directors Sanjay Leela Bhansali, and Anurag Kashyap, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting and the state health minister.

The doctors want Aishwarya to personally explain to the youth, especially women, the evils of smoking. “We want the poster removed immediately from BEST buses and other places and a boycott of the film by all concerned citizens. We also want the censor board to act sensibly,” said Dr Madhav Swami, president, MARD.

Guzaarish, directed by Bhansali and starring Aishwarya and Hrithik Roshan, released on Friday across the state.

“The film promoters are continuously promoting the scene where Aishwarya is shown smoking a cigarette. Why did they choose this particular scene only to advertise the film? It feels like an attempt of surrogate advertising for tobacco companies,” said Dr Pankaj Nalawade, general secretary, MARD, KEM Hospital.

“Such scenes glamourise the act of smoking which is dangerous,” said Dr Rajendra Trivedi, honorary secretary, Indian Medical Association, Mumbai.

Doctors are also upset with a recent statement made by Anurag Kashyap, who directed ‘No Smoking’, starring John Abraham, three years ago.

In a television interview, Kashyap said that people protesting against his film’s release had shut up the moment he paid them money and that public interest is not the motivating factor in such protests.

First Published: Nov 20, 2010 01:31 IST