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BJP: Javed Akhtar's Films to be Banned Until He Apologises for Comparing Hindu Groups to Taliban

© AP Photo / Joel RyanIndian Poet and screenwriter, Javed Akhtar, poses for portraits at the Taj hotel in central London, Wednesday, July 12, 2017
Indian Poet and screenwriter, Javed Akhtar, poses for portraits at the Taj hotel in central London, Wednesday, July 12, 2017 - Sputnik International, 1920, 05.09.2021
In an interview with news channel NDTV earlier this week, Bollywood lyricist Javed Akhtar compared Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) Hindu allies with the Taliban.* His comments raised ire among Hindu groups, whose supporters demonstrated outside Akhtar’s residence in Mumbai.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and its Hindu allies, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and Vishnu Hindu Parishad (VHP), have strongly condemned poet and screenwriter Javed Akhtar for drawing a comparison between them and the Taliban, and demanded an immediate apology. 
Ram Kadam, a BJP spokesperson, has warned that a ban on the screening of the lyricist's films will remain in place until Akhtar apologises.
In a video message, Kadam said Akhtar’s remarks were not only shameful, but painful and humiliating for millions of RSS and VHP functionaries of the RSS, as well as millions of people around the world who follow their ideology.
"We will not allow any of his films to run in this land of Ma Bharti (referring to India) till he apologises with folded hands to the functionaries of the Sangh who have dedicated their lives to the nation," Kadam said in a video on social media.
On 1 September, Akhtar, who is also a former member of Parliament, said, "Just like the Taliban want an Islamic State, there are those who want a Hindu Rashtra (Hindu country). These people are of the same mindset -- be it Muslim, Christian, Jews or Hindus."
"Of course, the Taliban is barbaric, and their actions are reprehensible, but those supporting the RSS, VHP and Bajrang Dal are all the same," Akhtar added.
Ashutosh J Dubey, who claims to be a legal advisor to the BJP's Maharastra state unit, said he had filed a police complaint against Akhtar. 
On Saturday, the BJP's youth wing launched a protest march to Javed Akhtar's residence, demanding an apology for his statement. According to youth wing leaders, they will hold protests outside his house until he apologises. 
*The Taliban is a terrorist group banned in Russia and many other countries.
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