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Aamir under fire for remarks on intolerance

New Delhi: Superstar Aamir Khan today came under attack from BJP and some in the film industry for his remarks on intolerance in the country as the saffron party linked his statement to a “deep political conspiracy” of Congress to malign the country.

But he was defended in equal measure by Congress and some other political parties and film celebrities who said the government should not brand its critics as unpatriotic and threaten them for “speaking truth”.

An ambassador of ‘Incredible India’, a government’s campaign to promote tourism, Khan was at the centre of a raging debate a day after he expressed “alarm and despondency” over the rise in incidents of intolerance in the last six to eight months.

“Kiran (his wife) and I have lived all our life in India.

For the first time, she said, should we move out of India…

She fears for her child, she fears about what the atmosphere around us will be,” the actor said yesterday in an interaction at the Ramnath Goenka Excellence in Journalism ceremony organised by the Indian Express.

BJP fielded its national spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain at a press conference in Mumbai to unleash a counter attack on Khan.

“Where will Aamir and his family go other than India? There is no other better country like India and no better neighbour than a Hindu for an Indian Muslim. What is the situation in Muslim countries and Europe. There is intolerance everywhere,” he said.

Shielding him from the attack, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi said the government should instead of branding all those who question it and the Prime Minister as “unpatriotic, anti national or motivated” reach out to people to understand what’s disturbing them.

“That’s the way to solve problems in India- not by bullying, threatening & abusing!” Gandhi said, a view that was shared by CPM leader Sitaram Yechury.