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Aamir Khan lends support to sufferers of Narmada, Bhopal tragedy

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, Apr 14 (UNI) Filmstar Aamir Khan, along with actor Rahul Bose, today joined the list of celebrities lending support to the Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA), even as its leader Medha Patkar's hunger strike entered its 17th day.

Calling his support to the agitation as ''purely emotional'', Aamir said he was moved after hearing about the sufferings of thousands of farmers who had been displaced and needed help for rehabilitation.

''My voice goes out in support of those who are seeking the government's help in their rehabilitation. I am not aware of all the facts on the dam or its height, but what basically moved me was the suffering of those who had lost their home, land, and jobs,'' the actor said.

He later joined the victims of the Bhopal gas tragedy sitting on a 'dharna' at Jantar Mantar.

Being a human it was natural for me to take up cudgels on their behalf and I feel for those fighting for safe and clean water in Bhopal, and compensation to those affected by the world's largest industrial accident, Aamir said.

''I urge the Prime Minister to listen to the sufferers of the Bhopal tragedy and those uprooted by the Narmada dam construction.

I am sure that after hearing them, something positive would certainly come out for them,'' he added.

Stressing that he had no political or social agenda at hand and that he was passionate about movies alone, the 'Rang de Basanti' star, however, said, ''In future if any other such cause comes up, I will definitely lend his voice.'' Declining to comment on reports that Youth Congress workers in Gujarat had burnt his effigies for lending support to the NBA, Aamir said he was sure they had misunderstood him. ''I am not against development or dams or anything of that sort, I simply want that those being displaced be duly compensated.'' ''I just want the people to know about the issues so that more and more people join me in bringing smiles to those suffering for decades,'' he added.

Later, social activist Aruna Roy addressing NBA activists said democracy itself was at stake with the Supreme Court order on rehabilitation being openly flouted by the government.

''Our non-violent agitation was not being taken seriously by the government. We demand the findings of the three ministers, who had recently vistied the Narmada site, be made public.'' Meanwhile, Ms Patkar's condition deteriorated further with her blood sugar level and blood pressure recording a drop, according to an NBA leader.

UNI AN AK HS2230

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