The list of Bollywood stars speaking up against Shiv Sena’s extremism just got a huge surge in cache with the arrival of Shah Rukh Khan in their count.
From veterans like Mahesh Bhatt to young, happening stars like Siddharth Malhotra have spoken out against Shiv Sena’s recent threats against Pakistani actors and other luminaries working in India.
Shah Rukh expressed his views of the rising intolerance in India during a Twitter townhall session hosted by India Today’s Rajdeep Sardesai today.
He said that he would give up his Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian honour that he was awarded in 2005, as a symbolic gesture, reports Huffington Post India.
“Yes, as a symbolic gesture I would give it up… I do think there is intolerance. There is extreme intolerance,” he said.
He also spoke about why Bollywood celebrities are often not as vocal about issues as their Hollywood counterparts.
“With great power comes great vulnerabilities,” Khan said, “if I take a stand on an X thing or a Y thing, people will come out and throw stones at my house but if I do take a stand, I’ll stand by it. I feel sad, it’s unfortunate and extremely pathetic but its better to keep quiet and do your job”.
He added, “How many times should I react? America with all its issues and non-issues has slightly more leeway,” and went on to explain that if “his film is stopped on a Friday for speaking his mind” then it would impact the lives of many others. “It’s not a cop out, I’m being honest.”