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In Full Support of Shah Rukh Khan

by Sahmat, 4 February 2010

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We, the community of artists, musicians, actors, writers, academics and cultural acticists are in full solidarity with the clear stand taken by Shah Rukh Khan in facing up to the recent threats against him by the Shiv Sena. This threat issued by the Shiv Sena is only the latest in a series of campaigns by many sections of the Hindu right against actors, artists and writers. The state, for its part, has always capitulated to these forces instead of confronting them head on. We salute the courage displayed by Mr Khan in standing up to these threats. He should know that the entire creative community stands by him and is willing to protect his right to have his films screened anywhere if the government is unwilling to ensure this. We call upon citizens to come out in defence of the cinema houses screening Mr Khan’s films.

The state government in Maharashtra and the central government should act immediately against those making violent threats, but given their past record, we do not have much confidence in them taking the necessary steps. We believe, however, that democratic sections of the Indian people are strong enough to face up to these forces which seek to use fear and hate to advance their narrow political interests. It is time to put an end to this once and for all.

Ram Rahman, MK Raina, Vivan Sundaram, Parthiv Shah, Indira Chandrasekhar

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