Compliments to Pakistan shouldn't be construed as anti-Indian, says Naseeruddin Shah

Published 15 Oct, 2015 04:07pm

Images Staff

Naseeruddin Shah responds to the backlash following his comments in praise of Pakistan

It isn't easy for Indian celebrities to speak up for Pakistan, and those who do, are almost always faced with a backlash.

Naseeruddin Shah was trolled on Twitter following comments he made in praise of Pakistan at the launch of a book by Pakistan's former foreign minister Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri.

In an interview with India Today, Shah said that he believed that he was targeted because he was a Muslim:

"My name is Naseeruddin Shah and I believe that's why I was targeted. It really pains me to say this. I have never ever been aware of my identity until now."

He added that lawyer AG Noorani and veteran journalist Dileep Padgaonkar made some hard-hitting comments at the event, but only his views were picked up and distorted as anti-national.

“I do not actually understand why anything said as a compliment to Pakistan must be construed as anti-Indian. If I say Imran Khan is great, does that make Sunil Gavaskar any less a cricketer,” the Bollywood actor asked.

More than 40 writers recently returned their awards in protest against the lynching of a Muslim man in Dadri and a series of murders of writers and rationalists, but Shah neither considers the move necessary nor beneficial.

"Awards mean nothing to me and therefore I won't bother returning them," Shah said, adding that the writers should write strongly about issues in India rather than returning their awards.