BJP wants Akhtar to apologize for comparing RSS with Taliban
(Sourced from PTI)
Security was beefed up outside the residence of writer-lyricist Javed Akhtar in Mumbai on Monday after a Maharashtra BJP MLA demanded an apology from him over his remark where he allegedly compared the RSS with the Taliban, a police official said. Adequate police bandobast was placed outside Akhtar's residence near Juhu's ISKCON temple. Security personnel, including women constables, were deployed outside the lyricist's home.
Meanwhile, BJP MLA and state party spokesperson Ram Kadam condemned Akhtar's remark. The legislator from Mumbai further said that no film involving Akhtar will be allowed to be screened in the country until he apologizes to the Sangh functionaries over his comments.
Akhtar recently told a news channel that the right-wing all over the world has an uncanny similarity. "The Taliban want an Islamic country. These people want to make a Hindu Rashtra," Akhtar said without naming the RSS. The Shiv Sena, which shares power with the NCP and Congress in Maharashtra, on Monday said Akhtar was "completely wrong" in comparing the RSS with the Taliban.
"How can you say those who favor the concept of a Hindu Rashtra are of Talibani mindset? We don't agree with this," an editorial in the Sena mouthpiece Saamana said. The Marathi publication said the stand of those who propagate a Hindu nation is moderate. "The partition which led to the creation of Pakistan was based on religion," it said.
"Those who support a Hindu nation only want that the majority Hindus shouldn't be sidelined. Hindutva is a culture and people of the community demand the right to stop those who attack this culture," it further said. The Sena edit also said that comparing Hindutva with the Taliban is an "insult" to the Hindu culture.
"Despite being a Hindu majority country, we have raised the flag of secularism. The proponents of Hindutva only want that Hindus shouldn't be sidelined," it said. "You can have differences with the RSS, but to call their philosophy Talibani is completely wrong," it added.
Akhtar and his family, including his wife/actress Shabana Azmi and children - filmmaker Zoya Akhtar and actor/filmmaker Farhan Akhtar have often found themselves at loggerheads with the right-wing party leaders. In 2020, the scriptwriter had lashed out at BJP MP Subramanian Swamy for sharing old news about "kicking out 60 imams." Azmi has lambasted BJP many times, too.