Is it right to judge Bollywood celebs based on their political views?
India, as a country, is obsessed with cricket and Bollywood. In this nation, cricketers and film stars are not just like any other mortal beings. They are literally worshipped by their die-hard fans. Such is the craze for them that people blindly follow (as well as try to emulate) them in every aspect of their lives. Bollywood stars have a huge reach and no one can deny the fact that they enjoy their ‘Superstar’ status thanks to these followers.
The stars encash on their popularity by signing lucrative deals and taking home a hefty sum for just lending their name to some particular brand. People don’t mind switching brands if their favourite star is endorsing some other brand.
But there are times when these stars end up saying something that may go against popular beliefs or thoughts. Take, for example, politics or religious views. We have witnessed several incidences where our Bollywood celebs are trolled or criticised left, right and centre for being vocal about their religious beliefs or political views.
Therein arises this one question that has always bugged me – Is it right to judge Bollywood celebs based on their political views? Why is it that every time incidents like Uri or the Pulwama attacks happen, everyone jumps to check how the Bollywood brigade has reacted to it. Have they mentioned anything or at least condemned the attacks? Why is getting a reaction on such grave issues from someone who is solely here to entertain so important?
What are these people even trying to convey when they express their rage over actors who have still not reacted on the subject? Why are netizens hell-bent on knowing a particular actor’s views or opinions most of the times about things which have got nothing to do with the film industry.
People judge celebs based on their political or religious views, but do you think doing so is fair? As an individual, an actor or a filmmaker has the same right as any other individual to practice any religion or follow any party and its ideologies. But if their ideologies happen to differ from that of the masses, all hell breaks loose. They are immediately labelled anti-national or looked upon as a threat!
This whole process of adoring someone one moment and then immediately criticising them the other moment (just because their views vary from yours) is so confounding. People should understand that they need to draw a line when it comes to separating a star from the person that he/she is off-screen.
We should adore an actor on the basis of the kind of versatile roles they play or their body of work. Judging them for their personal lifestyle choices, IQ or political affiliation should never come into the picture. Because they are as humane as anyone else. Expecting them to be righteous and devoid of any character flaw just because they play those kinds of roles on-screen is so naive.
But as they say, every coin has two sides. Similarly, there’s another aspect to this story too. Now some of you would argue that Bollywood celebs are not just actors, they are influencers too. Their popularity helps in making even a simple message reach a wider audience. And being a part of the society, isn’t it their obligation to contribute their bit as a responsible citizen?
That point is absolutely valid but tell me one thing, why do we need their views on anything and everything under the sun? One should criticise them when they keep mum on issues like #MeToo movement in the film industry. But when it comes to terrorist attacks and other such political issues, then instead of keeping a track on what the film industry has said or done, we should hold our political leaders accountable for it.