Bollywood has once again landed in hot water amid alleged linkups with Pakistan’s ISI intelligence agency.
Twitter is flooded with pictures of Bollywood’s A-ranking stars posing with influential Pakistanis and Indian origin US-based businessman, who is known for advocating Kashmiri independence.
The controversy has raged as India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party vice president Baijayant Jay Panda on Thursday warned the film industry to sever ties with Pakistanis.
"Came across shocking threads documenting personal & business links of some Bollywood personalities with certain Pakistanis & NRIs with undeniable track record encouraging violence in J&K, who have verifiable links to ISI & Pak army. I urge patriotic Bollywoodies to renounce them," Panda tweeted.
Social media users are demanding an investigation into Bollywood celebrities’ association with influential Pakistani citizens.
So SRK & Gauri are great friends & buisness partners (Gauri is) with Tony Ashai,a well known Kashmiri-American architect & a Kashmiri separatist with ties to Pak,who regularly spews venom against India@iamsrk Uses Indians to attain stardom & then supports Anti-India separatists? pic.twitter.com/rNiknM0SpP— Rupa Murthy (@rupamurthy1) July 23, 2020
Is both are playing there tag him too!! pic.twitter.com/4dSSxEVvo5— shabbier shaik (@shaikwrites) July 22, 2020
Others shared the pictures of Tony Ahai with Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan. Ashai is Indian origin Kashmiri and a leading businessman in California.
The Gesture of Tony Ashai with Prime Minister Niyazi says it all.— Al iskandar (@TheSkandar) July 21, 2020
Aziz Ashai (Tony Ashai) is on payroll of ISI, who is in touch with many people in Jammu and Kashmir and other parts of the country.
BJP politician Panda stated in an interview that he would like to give the benefit of the doubt to celebrities and "believe that our Bollywood personalities are patriotic and they should dump these ISI handlers", while noting that their behaviour cannot be ignored, given the terrorist infiltration bids that are being directed from across the border in Pakistan.
The controversy comes after the Indian Home Ministry blacklisted Houston-based Pakistani event manager Rehan Siddiqui, who is associated with organising Bollywood events in the US. He has been accused of involvement in funding anti-India propaganda.