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Exclusive: Nawaz Hurt About Being Denied His Ram Leela Moment

Nawazuddin Siddiqui is hurt about his ram leela performance being cancelled, suspects un-secular forces. 

Updated
Entertainment
2 min read
Nawazuddin Siddiqui is hurt about the Ram Leela being cancelled. (Photo courtesy: Twitter)

Nawazuddin Siddiqui, one of our finest actors was shown the door from a stage version of the Ram Leela in his home town Budhana, Muzaffarnagar because he is a Muslim, ostensibly because he stands accused of physically harassing his sister-in-law.

So this is what we’ve come to. Actors are now being segregated according to their religions. Gone are the days when a Dilip Kumar aka Yusuf Khan would move the collective Indian audience to tears with the bhajan Madhuban Mein Radhika Naache Re, or an Aamir Khan could dance to Madhuban Mein Jo Kanhaiya Kisi Gopi Se Miley.

Or for that matter, Naseeruddin Shah not only participating in a Ram Leela in Kundan Shah’s Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron, but also spoofing the Ramayan in a hilarious sequence.

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The actor is shell shocked at this blatant display of communal politics.

It (being barred from participating in the Ram Leela) can’t be because of the charges of domestic violence. My name has already been cleared of that allegation. In fact my home town is very upset with those who have levelled these charges at me. No, it couldn’t be the cooked-up charges that saw me out of the Ram Leela. It has to be something else.
Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Actor

Loath to believe let alone accept that the communal angle had splintered Nawaz’s aspiration to be in the Ram Leela, the actor said softly,

I have never faced any kind of prejudice anywhere at any time in my life. Jo bhi smasyaein huyi hain woh meri gareebi ke karan (the problems I’ve faced in the past were because of my poverty). I was welcomed with open arms in Bollywood. I am love by moviegoers irrespective of their cultural or religious inclination. Mujhe nahin lagta main kissi kaum ka hoon. Main ek Hindustani hoon (I don’t think I belong to any religious section. I am an Indian).
Nawazuddin Siddiqui

However the reality of the situation is that there is an exacerbated level of polarisation in our country, like we’ve never seen before.

We’re living in troubled times. And we all need to fight external enemies together, not start fighting among ourselves.
Nawazuddin Siddiqui

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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