Film star Aamir Khan found himself at the centre of a raging controversy on the issue of tolerance on Tuesday with saffron parties attacking him for stoking “fear” and telling him to “go to Pakistan” if he felt insecure in the country.
But parties at the other end of the spectrum defended the star actor, saying he was only reflecting the prevailing mood in India.
“He was a celebrated actor till now. But now it seems that we handed over milk to a snake. If he does not want to stay here, he can go to Pakistan,” Maharashtra Environment Minister and senior Shiv Sena leader Ramdas Kadam said.
At an event in New Delhi on Monday, the actor said he was alarmed at the rise in intolerance over the past six to eight months and his wife and film-maker, Kiran Rao, had wondered if they should relocate to another country.
“Kiran and I have lived all our lives in India. For the first time, she said should we move out of India? That’s a disastrous and big statement for Kiran to make to me. She fears for her child,” he said.
Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi said: “Instead of branding all those who question the government and Modiji [Prime Minister Narendra Modi] as unpatriotic, anti-national or motivated, the government should reach out to people and understand what’s disturbing them.”