Star Plus and Gajendra Singh might have expressed total confidence in providing security to the Pakistani kids participating in 'Chhote Ustaad – Do Deshon Ki Ek Awaaz", but even the staunch supporter of peace between India and Pakistan could foresee trouble. It didn"t take long for protests to rise. Expectedly, it"s come from one the same quarter – Maharashtra Navnirman Sena, Shiv Sena"s estranged partners. Expect the Sena to follow suit. The two like minded parties have always protested the presence of Pakistani artists in Indian films or TV shows.
After threatening Pakistani comedian Shakeel Siddqui, MNS are now demanding Pakistani kids to leave Indian chores quickly. Confirming the news, MNS Cine Workers" Association President Amey Khopkar says, “As of now we"ve issued a letter to the channel asking them to respect our concern. If they don"t abide by it, then we will have to explain to them in a different language. I don"t think either party would like that to happen".
Adding further, Khopkar says, “Look, we"ve got nothing against these Pakistani kids. Our ire is against the channels, who invite these artists purely for vested interests. Their sole loyalty lies with TRPs'. I"d like to ask these people, have they forgotten 26/11? Those perpetrators are still roaming free in Pakistan. Above all, diplomatic relations between our countries isn"t great too. Why are you inviting their artists under such atmosphere?"
This was an impending threat, and the media even raised these concerns at the show"s press conference. Back then, Star officials, producer Gajendrra Singh had combated these queries. However, none came forward to give their view now. We sent a text message to Singh but in vain. A channel spokesperson was quoted saying that the show isn"t about India versus Pakistan, but they form pairs to compete with each other.
This line of defense is least going to pacify the MNS men. Given the reality existing today, Star Plus and Sing were always treading on a dangerous line. If Star is made to follow MNS"s diktat what will happen to the show then?