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Saturday, January 28, 2023

Genocide denier: ‘The Kashmir Files’ team calls out Nadav Lapid

‘The Kashmir Files’ producer and lead actress Pallavi Joshi added to the volley of criticism against Israeli director and screenwriter Nadav Lapid’s comments on the Vivek Agnihotri film in his capacity as chairman of the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) jury.

In a media statement, Joshi said: “For decades the international community remained silent on the sufferings of the Kashmiri Pandit community. After three decades the Indian film industry finally realised that it needs to tell India’s story truthfully and objectively.”

Joshi, who played a professor in a university that appeared to be similar to JNU in ‘The Kashmir Files’, added: “Vivek and I were always aware that there are elements that would not like to see the stark truth on the screen, but it is very unfortunate that a creative platform was used for a political agenda to preserve an old, false and jaded narrative about Kashmir.”

She concluded by noting: “We are overwhelmed by the way the people of India rose to defend ‘The Kashmir Files’ against he rude and vulgar statement of a genocide denier.” She assured her audience that ‘The Kashmir Files’ remains “a people’s film”.

Another lead actor of the movie, Anupam Kher, also hit out at the way Lapid had dismissed the brutal reality shown in The Kashmir Files, and the way the Israeli director’s comments had been gleefully amplified by the usual cabal of Hindu-haters in Bharat’s polity.

Tweeting in Hindi, Kher said: “The truth of ‘The Kashmir files’ is stuck like a thorn in the throat of some people. They are neither able to swallow it, nor spit it out! Their soul is dead and they are desperately struggling to prove the film’s truth as a lie. But our film is now a movement, not a film. The despicable #Toolkit gang, keep trying!”

In a longer video posted on Twitter, Kher said: “Friends, some people do not like to show or talk about the truth as it is. They like to embellish the truth, decorate it, beautify it, with their favourite flavours and colours. Only then can they digest it. They want the truth about Kashmir to be shown through a beautiful, colourful lens. This is what they have been doing for the past 25-30 years.

“Today, after ‘The Kashmir Film’ has exposed the ugly truth of Kashmir to the world, these people are feeling queasy, they are experiencing spasms in their stomach. If you cannot see and recognise the fearsome horrible truth, then close your eyes and stitch your lips, but don’t make fun of it.

“Don’t make fun of it because we have suffered because of this truth. Our daughters and sisters have been singed by it. This ugly truth has become an inseparable part of our lives. Generations have to live with it. Go, and ask those who have suffered about their pain, their fearful truth.”

Towards the end of the video, Kher warmed up to the subject of the similarities between ordinary Israeli citizens and Kashmiri Hindus. He said: “India and Israel have been good friends. Both ordinary Israeli citizen and Kashmiri Hindus have been victims of terrorism. Yet, each country has its share of enemies of the country. Jai Hind!

(With IANS inputs)

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