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Damned if we do, damned if we don't – Anurag Kashyap fumes

The director wrote a scathing post on his Facebook page defending his tweets, saying filmmakers are 'soft targets'. 

Photo: Shutterbugs Images

Shriram Iyengar

The rebel is at it again. Anurag Kashyap has stepped up in defence of his statement questioning prime minister Narendra Modi's visit to Pakistan. In a Facebook post, the director wrote that it is 'unfortunate that I have to explain my intentions behind the tweet, because others and my industry colleagues have to suffer for me having an opinion'.

In a fairly long post, the Gangs Of Wasseypur (2012) director railed against the targeting of the film industry as 'soft targets'. He wrote, 'I am tired of the film industry being soft targets. We are damned if we do, damned if we don’t! When we don’t involve ourselves, they ask “why is Bollywood quiet now?” When we involve ourselves, we become the scapegoats to distract you from the real news. Either way they use us to sensationalise news. Still, I’d rather put my opinions out there on my own platform, than give the media a bite.' 

Kashyap also denied that he had asked the prime minister to apologise. He wrote, 'NO, Anurag Kashyap did not “ask the PM to apologise” (which most of the headlines would want you to believe, no one has their mind anyway), I merely questioned the fairness in judgement of a situation: the PM visited Pakistan for talks at the same time that a filmmaker was working with a Pakistani actor. Neither was aware of future events or mood. Yet only one pays the price. I’m also well aware that the government did not cry “BAN" or demand that Pakistani artists be sent back. Just as I’m aware that the PM himself doesn’t censor my films. But we elected them and so it is their responsibility to protect us from bullies – media or political parties. And when the governing party's designated members don't respond in hours of crisis because they are second guessing the mood of the PM, then I would rather talk straight to the PM himself.' 

The controversy over Pakistani artistes has only grown in recent weeks. The makers of Ae Dil Hai Mushkil, Fox Star Studios, have already asked for police protection against threats of vandalism by some small political parties like the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena.

Kashyap, meanwhile, continues to wage a solo war against the vitriol that is likely to increase following his recent post.

It looks like the filmmakers are in for the long haul this time.