Showbiz & Celebrity / Twitter War: Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370

Twitter War: Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370

Showbiz & Celebrity Aug 12, 2019

From Mahira Khan to Anupam Kher and Atif Aslam to Saba Qamar celebs from India and Pakistan have taken to Twitter to show where they stand on the controversial repeal of Kashmir’s Article 370 by  Modi. There were general statements as well as direct responses to each other all the while running the risk of losing their international fanbase in the process. Check out how it all went down here. 

 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s decision to repeal Article 370 — which gave Jammu and Kashmir autonomy from the rest of India with having their own constitution, their own flag and full ownership of the internal matters pertaining to the state — has thrown the Indian subcontinent in a frenzy and further fractured a long restive relationship between South Asian Hindus and Muslims. 

Advocates of the move, mostly Hindu, have praised it as a long-overdue step towards political unity, while critics, mostly Muslim, have censured it as an authoritarian power grab over a Muslim-majority state. 

It’s a divide no better represented than by the conflicting responses of several Bollywood and Lollywood celebrities on social media. 

 

Bollywood: Those who were for the repeal: 

The mood in Bollywood is mixed. On one hand, actors such as Kangana Ranaut, Pooja Bedi, Anupam Kher, Sanjay Suri, Raveena Tandon and writer Chetan Bhagat unequivocally support Modi’s decision. 

“It is a historic step in the direction of a terrorism-free nation,” posts Ranaut not on twitter but her official Instagram account. “Scrapping the Article 370 was long due … I congratulate the entire bharat including JnK on this historic day, we are together looking at a very bright future.”

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Kangana’s statement on her official instagram fanpage. Photo Credit: www.instagram.com/team_kangana_ranaut

 

Twitter however, was were all the action took place.

Bedi seconded Ranaut’s views on Twitter, adding that the repeal would also financially benefit the country by creating a “bustling thriving Kashmir we can buy & invest in.”

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Pooja Bedi on Twitter. Photo Credit: https://twitter.com/poojabeditweets

 

 

Bhagat wrote that it was time to let the system to go.

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Chetan Bhagat. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com/chetan_bhagat

 

Anupam Kher kept his reaction short and sweet with one sentence.

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Photo Credit: www.twitter.com/anumpampkher

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Raveena Tandon. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com/TandonRaveena

 

Bollywood: Those who were against the repeal: 

On the other hand, actresses Dia Mirza, Zaira Washim and Gauhar Khan did not echo their colleague’s sentiments, choosing instead to bring attention to the plight of Kashmiri residents currently on lockdown with minimal access to the rest of the country. 

Mirza and Wasim were cautiously vague, choosing to include the popular hashtag #Kashmir and tweeting their support for Kashmir. 

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Dia Mirza. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com/deespeak

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Zaira Wasim. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com/zairawasimmm

 

“What the hell us happening ??? May Allah keep every one safe! In Kashmir,” posted actress Gauahar Khan. 

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Gauahar Khan. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com/gauahar_khan

 

Fan support have followed suit — for the most part. 

Gurmeet Choudhary, who grew up in army camps in Kashmir, tweeted that he looked forward to “buying a house and doing business” now that the ban on property sales is lifted. The tweeted prompted a minor backlash from fans who criticized him for prioritizing business over the current state of Kashmiri residents on lockdown. 

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Gurmeet Choudhary. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com/gurruchoudhary

 

“Thank you for not thinking about kashmiris and their situation but being happy on starting your business and having your own home there,” reads a response. 

“All these people who are seemingly dying to buy property, shit bricks at the sound of one gunshot. Bhakchod!”, reads another. 

 

While Bollywood might still seem somewhat uncertain over the issue, Lollywood has clearly declared where it stands:

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Humayun Saeed. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com/iamhumayunsaeed

 

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Saba Qamar. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com/s_qamarzaman

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370:
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Hareem Farooq. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com/farooqhareem

 

This has prompted backlash from Indian fans, particularly towards Pakistani celebrities who have made appearances in Bollywood films. 

Mahira Khan, who has starred alongside Shahrukh Khan in Raees, came under fire after she posted a tweet condemning the abrogation. 

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Mahira Khan. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com/themahirakhan

 

Outraged fans have responded in kind, declaring her career in Bollywood over and asking her to never visit India again. 

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370
Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Fans respond to Mahira’s tweet. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com

 

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Fans respond to Mahira’s tweet. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com

 

The backlash has not stopped the actress from posting another message in support of Kashmir on her website. “Those who are tempted to celebrate the siege of Kashmir, perhaps pause a bit, look deep into your heart and you might find a tiny bit of empathy for those who’ll inevitably suffer. Kashmir has once again been turned into an open prison. #siegeofkashmir.”

Atif Islam, a Pakistani singer who has become one of Bollywood’s more popular playback singers faced a similar wave of fury from fans when he posted a message “condemn(ing) the violence and tyranny being conducted against Kashmiris.”

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Fans respond to Atif Aslam. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com/itsaadee

 

Celebs From India And Pakistan Sound Off On Article 370: Fans respond to Atif Aslam. Photo Credit: www.twitter.com/itsaadee

 

Despite the conflicting outrage on social media, the Pakistani government declared a ban on Indian films from their cinemas, as retaliation to the news. The Indian film fraternity remain non-plussed. 

According to India Today, filmmaker Ashoke Pandite, who is chief advisor of the Federation of Western India Cine Employees (FWICE), told IANS, “it does not make any difference whether Pakistanis watch our films or not. I think the internal security of the country comes first. Whether films release there or not is not relevant. We have a clear issue in front of us.”

Obviously this isn’t the first time where lines were drawn in the sand when it came celebs and fans weighing in on Indian and Pakistani issues. However it seem this time, the divide is more pronounced than ever.

 

Main Image Photo Credit: www.hindustantime.com (Khan)/ www.huffingtonpost.in (Ranaut)

 

 

 

Devika Desai

Devika Desai

Author

Devika (@DevikaDesai1) has a Masters in Journalism from Ryerson University. She's currently a web producer for the National Post. She has also interned at MidDay, a Mumbai-based tabloid. In her free time, she loves to read, work out once every blue moon and ask strangers if she can pet their dogs.

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