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Bollywood comes together for Sanju baba

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    By: Upala KBR, Mid-Day
    Thursday, December 07, 2006
    It would be safe to say that something like this is happening for the first time in the history of the Hindi film industry.

    Twenty-two organisations associated with the industry are coming together for one of their own - Sanjay Dutt - who has been found guilty under the Arms Act and is awaiting the verdict on his sentence.

    For Sanju baba

    Reveals a source from the industry, "The idea to lobby for Sanju was started by the workers of the film industry and their families. Sanju has always helped these people in his personal capacity and through IFFA and the Cine Artistes Association. They want to show him their gratitude." Another source from one of the organisations says, "We are in the process of putting together a plea which will be forwarded to the judiciary. The matter has been taken up by 22 film-related organisations across India, and includes everyone from stars and directors to technicians like light men, spotboys, song recordists, writers, producers,dancers, junior artistes and make-up artistes."

    Friend in need

    Pehlaj Nihalani, President, AMPTPP (Association of Motion Pictures&TV Programme Producers), reveals, "All associations involved with any and every aspect of filmmaking, creative and technical, are coming together to start a signature campaign for Sanju. The signatures will be collected on December 12 at Film City and will be given to Sanju. We will go all out to support him. We want to appeal to the judiciary and let them know that he is a good guy. In his hour of need, we will stand by Sanju."

    Have mercy

    This is not the first time that the industry is coming together for a cause. Says Pehlaj, "During Khalnayak, Subhash Ghai had taken out a morcha for Sanju but not many people had joined in. Maybe that's because it was a matter of personal interest for Ghai. But our signature campaign is selfless and without personal motives."

    When quizzed about why the industry never came out in support of Salman Khan when he was facing criminal charges. Nihalani says, "Sanju is a very nice boy and all the members of his family are good souls. Everyone loves him, as he is a lovely and helpful boy. He's not the same man he was 13 years ago. We want to convey to the judiciary to please have mercy on him."

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