Sachiniti

April 17, 2006

Aamir Khan-From Reel to Real

Filed under: India n Me,Of men women and Eunuchs,opinions,Random — Kaveeta Oberoi Kaul @ 12:25 pm
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Aamir khan apparently has been impressed with Medha Patkars Narmada Bachao Andolan’s fight for the villagers of Gujarat, So much that he has decided to join hands.

While Medhas fight began almost a decade back, when she demanded that the villagers be re-habilitated in direct proportion to what they were supposedly to be deprived, in the construction of the Sardar Sarovar dam, Aamir has decided to pitch in now.

Since, no relief is in sight and the work of the dam now approved, the tension increases. Medha is fasting since March 29th in New Delhi.

There seem to be dimensions that are hidden, insiduous suggestions and veiled agendas, on the part of the Government. While the rehabilitation and the modalities have been underlined by the supreme Court, which for all practical purposes should be beyond the scope of discussion or dissension, the fact that not only has its adherement been in doubt, as also the fight to raise the height of the dam.

Put simply, this would mean, additional villages submerged and further mass of people to be rehabilitated.

Narendra Modi has taken this opportunity to prove that he is as much a star in Gujarat as Aamir if not more. After all he can ensure that Aamirs film and its posters be vandalised, and anarchy prevail outside the theatres in Gujarat. He wants Aamir to be out of the coterie supporting Medha and he is doing his not so Mod-i-est bit.

Yesterday there was a candle light protest against Aamir, outside his residence, by BJP supporters. It lasted all of 20 minutes. What is clear is the fact that it was meant to be a publicity stunt more than anything else. How does one explain the presence of the media in all its force, with cameras, mikes et al!!

Aamir stands his ground. His take on it seems reasonable and is in consonance with how an average person would react. Build the dam if it means water for Gujarat. But rehabilitate displaced villagers. Fair enough.

In a recent interview Aamir was asked if his new Avatar was thanks to the role he assayed in RDB, to which he replied in the affirmative while reminding that this was what the film was about. Activism from the common man.

True Aamir. But the problem is that others have seen the film too. And if they choose to utilise their newly found sense of activism, courtesy RDB, to mobilise opinion against you and your support, then who is to stop them!!

All said and done, the antics of the Modi Government in creating a widespread feeling of dissension against the Congress, is obvious. Modi claims that this is a plot by the central Govt to influence the Supreme Court from disallowing the increase in height of the dam. He has begun his 51 hour fast , albeit in air conditined comfort, as a protest .

For the lay man, what it finally ends in is befuddlement and maze of questions.

Why has Aamir , suddenly jumped into the fray? RDB has recently been given a tax exemption from the Congress. Is it because the Defence minister , in the movie, was obviously from the BJP cabinet? Gujarat is under the BJP rule.. Is it pay back time for Aamir and his gang???

Deductions anyone.

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14 Comments »

  1. Anyone who dares raise his voice against the Gujarat Govt meets this fate. It is terribly wrong that Aamir is being victimised in this fashion..Politics is a dirty game and that is why no one wants to involve themselves. This is going to stop others from doing what they can in the future too.

    As for your question? worth thinking about.. but I dont know.

    Comment by Sanjay — April 17, 2006 @ 2:12 pm | Reply

  2. Good post.

    You have touched on a meaning I have been thinking of for quite some time.

    There was no way they could have got the exemption had BJP been in power. Not that it is a bad film. But ..

    So I guess it is pay back time:)

    Funny how no one seemed to have thought the way.

    Comment by Anonymous — April 17, 2006 @ 2:27 pm | Reply

  3. From what one gets to hear about Aamir khan, he seems like somebody who would not put his finger into a pie that he was not wholly convinced about. Perhaps this agitation has moved him and he wants to put his shoulder to it.

    why doubt that? It is for a good cause, which is what I feel.There are reports of Medha patkar being a drama queen and all such. But it does not seem to gel as a whole.

    What do you think?

    Comment by doublebarrel — April 17, 2006 @ 2:52 pm | Reply

  4. Sanjay,

    yes this wide spread protests against aamir are going to prove a deterrent for people sensitive to this kind of public outbursts. One needs a steely determination to keep going under such adversities. I think Aamir ought to be lauded there. He has made his resoluteness clear, in no uncertain terms, though he took a day to think about it or do whatever. On knowing of the reactions from the Gujarat Govt, he said at a press conference that he would respond the next day. which he did.

    He made a rather pertint and spicy remark when he suggested to Mr. Modi that on breaking his fast with the first morsel, he should remember that it is thanks to the farmers that he is getting to eat it.Dramatical and pungent one there.

    I loved it.

    Hey anonymous,

    So that makes it two of us.

    Doublebarrel,

    Whatever the motivation, Aamirs joining the bandwagon is going to give Medha and her team the spurr they need. There is no doubt there. She has other heavy weights with her too, Arundhati roy etc. But nowhere compared to the kind Modi has under his belt.

    Frankly, about her faking it, I have my reservations. One does not need statistics to realise that in India the poor are never dished out what has been apportioned for them.Then whether it is the quake relef, or the education funds. her contention here is that the land offered to them is not usable for irrigation and they will eventually be ripped off a livelihood. Is that too difficult to believe? Not to me.

    Comment by Kaveetaa Kaul — April 17, 2006 @ 3:09 pm | Reply

  5. Medha patkars voice is being intentinally misinterpreted by vested interests to mean as if she is coming in the way of development in Gujarat, is against development of any kind whatsoever. When the truth of the matter is totally different. There is no need for her to go to such lengths if there was not an indefatigable will to see her cause successful.

    If people join her, then she is accused of looking out for celebrity support. If she is alone, then she is ignored in any case.

    Right now, all Modi and his allies are doing is hogging the limelight. he has brought out the kashmir rehabilitation issue here. Where is the connection?

    more people should come forward. All he can do is fast for 51 hours. Medha has been fasting for almost two weeks and her kidneys are affected now. It definitely is not blackmail. But how else can she draw attention to the problem. A decade is a long enough time!

    Comment by Rk — April 17, 2006 @ 4:01 pm | Reply

  6. Kaveetaa

    Suspicions are justified. I mean it isn’t a coincidence that he ‘discoverd’ himself just yesterday. Did he?

    And it no coincidence that this publicity just comes once again before the realease of his next.

    Talk about ulterior motives.

    Time will tell though.

    Comment by Anushka — April 17, 2006 @ 9:59 pm | Reply

  7. Kaveetaa

    Suspicions are justified. I mean it isn’t a coincidence that he ‘discoverd’ himself just yesterday. Did he?

    And it no coincidence that this publicity just comes once again before the realease of his next.

    Talk about ulterior motives.

    Time will tell though.

    Comment by Anushka — April 17, 2006 @ 9:59 pm | Reply

  8. Yeah Anoushka,

    Appearances are always deceptive..but going by his track record..his interest does seem genuine.

    Being conscientious by nature, he never really meddles until he is certain.

    The latest is that both, Modi and Medha have called off their hunger strike..Sc has given the order that the work of the dame and rehabilitation should take place simultaneously..to apease both. But personally, measures of the kind cannot be ensured by sc orders until and unless the State will is not of the same.

    Comment by Kaveetaa Kaul — April 18, 2006 @ 9:07 am | Reply

  9. Though I really have no reasons to believe that AK’s joining the cause is governed by ulterior motives, one can’t help that niggling suspicion. Have worked with too many Bollywood types on too many causes to not be cynical.

    However, without questioning the motives, one must look at what he has brought on the table for the NBA. While one can’t really say that he has bachaoed the Narmada Bachao Andolan, one must acknowledge that AK’s 72 hour support to the cause brought it more media limelight than the 50 odd day fast by Ms Patkar and the excellent wordsmith-y by Ms Roy.

    On my way back from work last evening, my driver – a burly Surd from Ropar – asked me: “Oye Sirji… eh Narmada Andolan kee hayga??” And to me, that has been the true success of AK’s involvement with the cause – He has single-handedly taken the cause from the confines of “intellectually rich (?)” environment of upper class drawing rooms and blogs to the masses…

    As far as the Cost-Benefit Analysis of the Sardar Sarovar Dam and is concerned, well thats a matter of another post altogether… as is the Community vs Nation debate!!

    Comment by Chameleon's Karma — April 18, 2006 @ 10:10 am | Reply

  10. Hmmm.if endorsement be the mission..then accomplished beyond doubt.

    Besides, a likewise stint with Pepsi fetches him crores.If he decides to put his rubber stamp to this for free, then Kudos , I guess.

    How the NBA is in summation going to benefit , or are any gains to be accrued, we wait and watch. Will he be back here in the event the promised rehabilitation turns out to be a la-la land dream?

    Comment by Kaveetaa Kaul — April 18, 2006 @ 10:54 am | Reply

  11. My gut feel is that he will be back… my gut feel also is that there will be a few more causes that he’ll endorse… and keeping in mind that AK is not really given to spontaneity and rarely does something because its here and now and thats unplanned, I suspect that this path has been picked by him after a huge amount of deliberation. I suspect that this passes through the parliament… and probably ends in a Rahul Gandhi cabinet!!

    Crystal gazing or wishful thinking, I know not!!

    Comment by Chameleon's Karma — April 18, 2006 @ 11:22 am | Reply

  12. I suspect that this passes through the parliament… and probably ends in a Rahul Gandhi cabinet!!

    Wow..that is some forecast!

    Cant seem to digest it whole though.

    he is nit picky..does a film a year, sometimes takes upto three to approve one.

    God save us..Indian polity is in need of quick decision makers, and speedy implementationalists!

    See him going the Amitabh way, even if he does. You have to have a stomach for netagiri. Any sensitive, straight playing, God fearing, peace loving, Patriotic, Indian, will never join Politics! Loving your country is not needed..hating your countrymen is needed more.

    Comment by Kaveetaa Kaul — April 18, 2006 @ 11:36 am | Reply

  13. So help me, God!!

    Comment by Chameleon's Karma — April 18, 2006 @ 11:45 am | Reply

  14. Why are we giving Aamir khan more importance than the cause.WE should stop allowing the issue to be hijacked. After some time all that will be left is Aamirs rebuttal to Modi..thanks to the media

    Comment by Anonymous — April 18, 2006 @ 8:21 pm | Reply

  15. Anonymous,

    Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown!

    If the stars do not participate we curse them for being insensitive, basking in the glory of their fortunes etc.

    If they do, then they are cursed for stealing the thunder.

    Give the guys a break:)

    If you feel the issue will now lay buried, who is stopping you from disallowing that to happen? write, blog,speak to the media or better still join NBA

    Comment by Kaveetaa Kaul — April 18, 2006 @ 8:36 pm | Reply


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