An attempt is being made to discredit the film industry based in Mumbai, probably to ensure that the renowned personalities residing here leave, Shiv Sena alleged on Friday amid the ongoing Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) probe.
Sena, through party mouthpiece Saamana, said that the stars from the Hindi film industry, Bollywood, have been used by politicians in the Centre as well as the State from time to time to suit their needs.
This comes at a time when the NCB has summoned several prominent Bollywood actors, including Deepika Padukone, Sara Ali Khan, among others associated with the industry in connection with a drug case related to the death of actor Sushant Singh Rajput.
"Is such a type of environment being created so that the cinema industry and the flashy personalities working in it leave Mumbai? This speculation is gaining ground. In a systematic fashion a picture is being painted that the actors, directors, cinematographers etc have left acting and become 'gardulle' and leaving arts they have started farming 'ganja' and 'afeem' in the galleries, and balconies of their homes," the article read.
"Prime Minister Modi and several States have used the artists of this film industry for (enhancing) their political status. In Gujarat Modi and Salman Khan were flying kites. Amitabh Bachchan was the brand ambassador of Gujarat. PM Modi had given the responsibility of teaching people how to eat 'aam' (mangoes) to Akshay Kumar. Vivek Oberoi has made earnings from the film made on Modi, and Anupam Kher on the film made from Manmohan Singh," it added.
The Saamana article further raised the issue of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath announcing the construction of a film city in the State.
The film city as announced by the UP Chief Minister will be spread over one thousand acres and will be built around the Yamuna Authority area, with the help of international advisors in the coming two-three years the editorial said.
"This project is smaller in scale than the film cities in Mumbai and South India. The pledge to announce a film city is good but running it is hard, it should also be taken into account. Currently, good work is being done in Hyderabad's Ramoji film city and Mumbai's Goregaon 'Chitranagri' but Mumbai's RK Studio had to be sold off. Big studios like Kamalistan and Mehboob are facing difficulties," it added.
Sena further said that Mumbai's 'Chitrangari' will always stay relevant, and asserted that the Centre should have thought of starting a film city in Kashmir after the abrogation of Article 370.
"Everybody has contributed to the Hindustani film industry. Dadasaheb Phalke and Maharashtra took everyone along. Then it was expanded. Now mudslinging is being done. But if other States are also starting film industries like Mumbai then best wishes to them," it added.