Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri has condemned Deepika Padukone for showing solidarity with JNU students' protest. He said that the actress's marketing strategy for Chhapaak would backfire, as she has conveyed to 98 percent of Indian students that she does not stand with them.
Chhapaak is slated for theatrical release on January 10 and Deepika Padukone. While she was in Delhi to promote the movie, she went to the Sabarmati T-Point in Jawaharlal Nehru University to show her solidarity with the students, who were attacked by a masked mob on Sunday. She did not address the crowd but stood by, while former JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar and current President Aishe Ghosh spoke.
This small act of Deepika Padukone created a sensation instantly with many people debating on her presence in TV channels and social media. Filmmaker Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri, who appeared on Times Now's The Newshour debate, condemned the actress and other Bollywood celebs, who are supporting the students' protest. He said that it is a good marketing strategy, but it is sure to backfire.
When asked Deepika Padukone supporting the students, Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri told, "I congratulate their marketing and PR team, which did a brilliant job. In one stroke, they have got millions of dollars' publicity. It is perfect because her film is about social injustice. So it makes sense to stand up with some people, who are talking about social injustice."
Vivek Agnihotri said that handful celebs from Bollywood are sending a wrong message, which will not be accepted by the majority of the youth of the country. He said, "But there are two things here. There are students and Bollywood. Everybody is trying to say that this is the voice of students. Just for records, I would like to say that there are around 800 universities, 40,000 colleges and 300 million students in India."
The Tashkent Files director added, "If you count these protesting students, they won't be more than 10,000, or 100,000, or 1,000,000. Even if they are 1 crore, their percentage stands very low before 30 crore students in the country. This is hardly anything. The remaining 98 percent of students also have the voice."
Vivek also said that this strategy will end up incurring losses to Chhapaak. He said, "By doing this, the star, who has gone there to promote her film with only commercial interest and without any moral interest, has conveyed a message to 98 percent of the students that she does not stand with them. This is the risk they have taken."
The Urban Naxals: The Making of Buddha in a Traffic Jam author made serious charges against the Bollywood celebs. Vivek Agnihotri said, "People think that this development suddenly erupted. But these are the same faces, people, news coverage, August Kranti Maidan, Carter Road and same Bollywood personalities, who came for intolerant debate, Award Wapsi and lynching issues."
Vivek Agnihotri alleged that these celebs are instigated and funded by Pakistan. He concluded, "These are a handful of people, who are now extremely frustrated after Kashmir issue. It is very dangerous because Pakistan instigating them funding them and giving them logistical organizational support. These people are falling prey to it."