Karan Johar apologises to Raj Thackeray after trouble over his new film
MUMBAI: Maharashtra Navnirman Sena supporters on Friday stopped the screening of Karan Johar’s much talked about new film Wake Up Sid at some cinema halls here and in Pune objecting to use of the word “Bombay” instead of “Mumbai” in the movie, forcing the film-maker to apologise to Sena chief Raj Thackeray.
After the Sena activists asked cinema hall owners to stop the screening of the movie released earlier in the day, Karan Johar drove to Raj Thackeray’s residence for a 20-minute meeting with him following which he said, “It was a genuine mistake on our part….. Henceforth we will use ‘Mumbai’ instead of ‘Bombay’. We have apologised for the same.”
“We had no intention to hurt anyone’s feelings. We will put a disclaimer in the film (over the name Mumbai, instead of Bombay),” he told reporters.
Johar, who has produced the film, said, “The city of Mumbai is referred to as Bombay in a conversation between Ranbir Kapoor and Konkona Sen some 12 times (in the movie). I explained to him that the error happened because of the colloquial parlance used in the film and he understood the point.”
Asked if this was a publicity stunt, Johar said, “There are several other marketing platforms for publicity of the film. This was not a publicity stunt.”
Raj Thackeray told reporters after the meeting with Johar that the film industry henceforth should be careful while mentioning Mumbai in any film. He said the protest was withdrawn after Johar’s apology and assurance to make the necessary changes in the movie.
‘Not right,’ says CM
Later in the day, Maharashtra Chief Minister Ashok Chavan disapproved of Johar apologising to Raj Thackeray. He said Johar should have approached the police and the Government if he had “any problem”.
“It was not right for Karan Johar to have apologised,” said the Chief Minister.
“Police are there to address his (Johar’s) concerns and the Government was always there to assist him,” Mr. Chavan said, adding, “He should have sought the Government’s help.”
He also wondered why the well-known film-maker had to apologise to an individual at all. - PTI