If holocaust was right then exodus of Kashmiri pandits also right: Kher slams Lapid on 'Kashmir Files' remark
Anupam Kher has come down heavily on the Israeli filmmaker Lapid for his 'vulgar' and 'propaganda' remarks on The Kashmir Files. The actor said if holocaust was right then so is the exodus of Kashmiri pandits.
New Delhi, Nov 29: Israeli filmmaker Nadav Lapid's remarks on 'The Kashmir Files' as "vulgar" and "propaganda" film at the closing ceremony of IFFI (International Film Festival of India) has been evoking strong emotions and heavy criticism from around the country. Irrespective of whether someone liked the movie or not, there are almost unanimous voices slamming the Israeli filmmaker for his comments.
Now, veteran actor Anupam Kher has slammed the Israeli filmmaker Nadav Lapid and said if the holocaust was right, then the exodus of Kashmiri pandits is also right. "If the holocaust was right then the exodus of Kashmiri pandits is also right. This seems pre-planned because immediately after it the tool-kit gang became active. It's shameful for him to make a statement like this even though he comes from a community of Jews who suffered from the holocaust," ANI quoted Kher as saying.
Nadav Lapid, who headed the jury of the 53rd International Film Festival of India (IFFI), described Hindi film 'The Kashmir Files' as "propaganda" and "vulgar" and he was "disturbed and shocked" to see the film being screened at the film festival.
"All of us were disturbed and shocked by the movie 'The Kashmir Files'. It felt to us like a propaganda and vulgar movie that was inappropriate for an artistic and competitive section of such a prestigious film festival," he said. "I feel comfortable to openly share this feeling with you since the spirit of the festival can truly accept critical discussion which is essential for art and life", Lapid said.
Anupam Kher said that his statement has "pained those people who suffered this tragedy." He added, "I would just say may god give him wisdom so that he doesn't use the tragedy of thousands of people to fulfill his aim on stage,"
Referring to his remarks, Anupam Kher also tweeted, "No matter how high the height of the lie is.. It is always small in comparison to the truth."
Anupam Kher also attached pictures from 'The Kashmir Files' and Steven Spielberg's film 'Schindler's List' with his tweet.
#WATCH | Anupam Kher speaks to ANI on Int'l Film Festival of India Jury Head remarks for 'Kashmir Files', "...If holocaust is right, the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits is right too. Seems pre-planned as immediately after that the toolkit gang became active. May God give him wisdom.." pic.twitter.com/cUQ1bqzFs7— ANI (@ANI) November 29, 2022
Bollywood film 'The Kashmir Files', which was released in theatres on March 11, was part of the Indian Panorama Section at IFFI and was screened on November 22. The movie had minted Rs 252.90 crore business in India alone.
Written and directed by Vivek Agnihotri, the film stars Anupam Kher, Darshan Kumar, Mithun Chakraborty and Pallavi Joshi among others. The story dealt around the exodus of Kashmiri Hindus from Kashmir following the killings of people from the community by Pakistan-backed terrorists.
Meanwhile, Sudipto Sen, who was also part of the jury, has distanced himself from Lapid's comments. He shared a strong-worded letter disapproving the comments made by the jury head.
"Whatever has been said by IFFI 2022 Jury Chairman Mr. Nadav Lapid about the film Kashmir Files, from the stage of closing ceremony of 53-rd IFFI was completely his personal opinion. In the official presentation of the Jury Board to the Festival Director and in the official Press Conference, where we 4 juries (the fifth jury had to leave for her personal emergency) were present and interacted with the press, we never mentioned anything about our likes or dislikes," he said.
"As juror, we are assigned to judge the technical, aesthetic quality and socio-cultural relevance of a film. We don't indulge in any kind of political comments on any film and if it is done, it is completely in personal capacity - nothing to do with the esteemed Jury Board," he added.
Even director Vinod Ganatra has condemned the remarks made by Nadav Lapid. "If the jury talks like this, then what about Schindler's List? I strongly oppose and condemn this jury's comment. I am also the chairman of the feature jury and I feel that it is insulting to India and for a film like this," he said.
"The jury didn't understand the spirit behind making this film. It is a highly-technically superb film. I, as a responsible filmmaker who has traveled for 96 jury assignments, a responsible filmmaker, and the only Indian who has won the Liv Ullmann Peace Prize, condemn this comment. If a jury feels like this, then it is insulting. It is a politically motivated comment. He can't say that all the jury members felt like that. It is a matter of shame for all of us. I strongly feel that this is an insult to the country. He is an Israeli. What about Schindler's List which won Oscar? Because it is related to Israelis, they don't have a problem," Ganatra added.