A guarded U-turn? When Aamir Khan met Narendra Modi

Aamir Khan, who has been championining the cause of social issues, today met Prime Minister Narendra Modi. But his bland tweets about that meeting betrayed little.

FP Staff June 24, 2014 11:05:59 IST
A guarded U-turn? When Aamir Khan met Narendra Modi

Aamir Khan, who has been championining a raft of social issues met Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday to discuss the problems which he highlights in his TV programme Satyamev Jayate. Khan tweeted out about his meeting with PM as well saying, “Just came out of my meeting with Honorable Prime Minister of India Shree Narendra Modiji. Was very kind of him to spare his valuable time."

He added in another tweet, "Shared with him the overwhelming support that we got from people across the country through ‘Vote for Change’ campaign on SMJ (Satyamev Jayate) on the various issues that we tackled in our show. He has assured me that he will look into all the matters." Khan also tweeted out a picture of Modi and him interacting in the PM's office.

The ‘Vote for Change’ episode, which was aired in the run up to the last Lok Sabha elections, focused on criminalisation of politics in India while urging the voters to cast their votes to make a difference.

A guarded Uturn When Aamir Khan met Narendra Modi

Aamir Khan and Narendra Modi during the meeting. Image from Twitter

Below are his tweets:

For Aamir, this looks like a big U-turn as in 2006, the Bollywood star had slammed Modi's government over the 2006 violence in Vadodra and had hinted at the Gujarat riots as well without mentioning them specifically.

He had said at the time, "I think it is (Vadodara incident) very sad and what happened in Gujarat a few years ago was also equally unfortunate. It's a shame that the administration is not able to control the situation there and it is resulting in deaths of innocent people." In 2006, riots had broken out in Vadodara over the municipal council's decision to remove the dargah (shrine) of Syed Chishti Rashiduddin, a medieval Sufi saint.

He had also said in the interview, ""It doesn't matter which religion these victims belong to. The bottom line is they are all human beings. It seems to me that the law and order machinery or the administration is simply not capable of controlling the situation." Read more about it here.

Khan had also lent his support in that year to the Narmada Bachao Andolan in Gujarat and his film Fanaa which was released around that time had been banned by the Gujarat government. He had called on the then Gujarat government to adequately compensate people displaced by construction of the Narmada dam and had refused to withdraw his comments, despite protests from BJP workers. "I will not retract my steps nor will I apologise to anyone simply because I've not done any wrong," he had said.

Aamir had specified then that he was not opposed to the construction of the dam but rather wanted that those who were displaced should have been adequately compensated. Rediff had quoted him as saying, "Let me specify that I am not opposed to Narmada dam construction. All I want is that the people, who have been ousted by the construction of dam, should get alternative accommodation."

The recent meeting with Modi could be a sign that times are changing but Aamir's tweets about it are carefully guarded. The Bollywood star seems keen to make sure they do not sound like some kind of gushing endorsement. Why Modi, who has never seemed that interested in celeb photo-ops and has said he has no time to watch films, wanted to meet Aamir is not clear either.

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