“Rajputs were pawns of British” –writer-lyricist Javed Akhtar

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While defending director Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s controversial historical epic Padmavati on Monday, lyricist and writer Javed Akhtar made incendiary remarks against the Rajputs, who have been protesting the film’s release over its depiction of Queen Padmavati.

Speaking to Aaj Tak, Akhtar said, “The Rajputs and the Rajwadas never fought against the British and now they are taking to the streets against a film and a filmmaker. All these ‘ranas’ ‘rajas’ and ‘maharajas’ of Rajasthan were serving in the courts of the British for 200 years. Where did their Rajput honour and valour go that time? They have become what they are since they had accepted to serve the British.”

Akhtar’s statements were condemned by the Karni Sena, the same outfit that organised an attack on Bhansali earlier this year, and has been inciting violence in the weeks leading up to the film’s December 1 release (which has now been deferred).

Mahipal Singh Makrana, state president, Shri Rajput Karni Sena, said, “He (Akhtar) has lost our respect. From now on he is banned in Rajasthan and if he dares we will thrash him on the streets.” He was addressing reporters while burning Akhtar in effigy.“Rajputs and Rajwadas have sacrificed their lives and he is mocking our history and saying we were serving the British,” he said.

“He does not deserve ‘Padharo Mhare Des’ treatment anymore. He speaks a lot in literature festivals and next time we are not going to allow him to even come to Jaipur and speak,” he said.

Javed Akhtar and actor Shabana Azmi had called for an industry-wide boycott.

Akhtar said to journalist Rajdeep Sardesai, “the people who say they will eradicate terrorism, can’t ensure that a film is released.”

“For discussion’s sake, even if one was to accept that somebody’s feelings have been hurt, that she was indeed a historical figure, and so on, what are we doing about it? Are you going to cut somebody’s nose or chop off somebody’s head? Is that how a civilised country will work?” he asked

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5 COMMENTS

  1. Some Rajputs even served in the court of Moguls, like Man Sinh and Jai Chand but it also gave brave and patriotic king like Maha Rana Pratap. India n history is so complicated!

  2. Javed Akhtar is a secularist in name only. He is quick to condemn anyone who stands up against the atrocity and tyranny of Akbar, Taimur, Sallaudin Khiji, Tipu Sultan, Aurangzeb, and everyone else in the lineage of Islamic conquistadors who raped pillaged killed and converted in equal measure to make Bharat Islamic. He has exposed his own credentials of being a fake secularists, for underneath the skin he is as Islamic one can get. He forgets the valour of Maharana Pratap who ran rings around Akbar The Tyrant (he was not great in the least – it is only in the distorted version of History which our so called historians follow like slaves because it is only the conquerors who write and distort history). Javed Sab maintain your dignity while you can, for your days of trotting fake history are over. Also kindly advise Begam Shabana to restrain her vitriolic tongue.

  3. Well this is not about the British, its about Islamist Mughals abducting Hindu Rani’s which British did not stoop so low as

  4. For some reason Javed Akhtar and his wife have assumed a position of star literati defending the Islamist angle in everything they write or do whilst trying to pass as one of the your correspondents said, phoney secularists. But proof is in the pudding, consistently their comments tend to hurt the sentiments of Hindus and in this case the bravest of all, the Rajputs. British have a history of siding with the top end of the society of any country they ruled. Mughals were on the wane and naturally Rajputs, seeing no alternative would side with the British not least to avenge the atrocities the Muslim kings and Nawabs carried out on the population and their Hindu subjects. Its called partnership in the same way the European would call the British pawns of USA. Why would the Rajputs side with the Mughals to keep that empire going with a despot like Aurangzeb in preference to British? Its no brainer Mr Akhtar so please keep your coated language to yourself and read proper history.

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