Akshay slams Aamir on intolerance remarks, ‘PK’ star hits back

Mumbai: Bollywood star Aamir Khan today came under fresh attack for his “leaving India” comments in the “intolerance” debate with actor Akshay Kumar saying ups and downs happen in every country and one should not start giving “bold” statements.

Aamir, 50, whose comments while wading into the “intolerance” debate last November had kicked up a huge controversy, hit back, asserting he never meant that he wanted to leave the country or that India was intolerant.

“Any kind of ups and downs happen in every nation and you can’t get into so much straight away that you start giving such bold statements. These kind of things happen. There are so many good things also which we don’t speak about.

“Unfortunately, we have the habit of only pointing out the wrong things but nevertheless everybody has the right to talk,” Akshay told India Today TV.

Veteran actor and BJP MP Shatrughan Sinha said that it was “nadaan” (childish) for some in Bollywood to talk about intolerance and he does not agree with them.

“A lot of people from the film industry brought up the issues of intolerance in haste, and it is childish to do so. I don’t stand by them in this regard,” Sinha said at the Jaipur Literature Festival(JLF).

Asserting that no other country is as diverse as India, Aamir said, “I was born here and I will die here.”

“I never said India was intolerant or I wanted to leave the country. I also understand the emotions of those who were hurt. I would like to say that my statement was misunderstood and to some extent media is responsible for it.

I was born here and I will die here,” the ‘PK’ star told reporters in Mumbai on the eve of of his 2006 superhit “Rang De Basanti” completing ten years.

“Our country is diverse with so many languages, culture…no other country has so much diversity as India,” he said.

Aamir’s statement last November that he was “alarmed” by a number of incidents and that his wife Kiran Rao even suggested that they should probably leave the country had caused a nationwide outrage.

After a controversy broke out over his remarks, Aamir came out with a clarification, asserting that he stood by what he said and “neither I, nor my wife Kiran, have any intention of leaving the country.