A section of celebs and eminent personalities came out in support of Bollywood actress Kangana Ranaut, whose house in Mumbai was demolished by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) over “illegal construction.”
Among Ranaut’s supporters was Indian wrestler Babita Phogat who slammed the Maharashtra government and also called out Bollywood’s ‘award wapsi’ gang for their silence.
What is Award Wapsi Gang?
Started in 2015, several Indian writers and poets protested against central government for its silence on increasing incidents of communal violence in the country. Instead of conduction any rallies or strikes, they returned the prestigious Sahitya Akademi Award. The incident was referred to as award wapsi.
Babita took to Twitter and shared a video speaking in Hindi. ““The way the Uddhav Thackeray government demolished Kangana’s office, it is clear that they are flustered. Their disgusting mentality is being seen by the entire country. Do they think they can scare Kangana with this and silence her? If yes, then they are mistaken, because Kangana is not one to get scared. The entire country is standing with her. I want to appeal to my fellow countrymen to not let our sister’s strength and courage weaken, otherwise, in the future, no sister will have the courage to speak up.”
“I don’t understand one thing. So much happened in Mumbai but why is the ‘candle gang’ and award wapsi gang of Bollywood silent? Can they not see what is happening? Why are they so quiet? The entire country is witnessing the disgusting mentality of the Uddhav Thackeray government and they will soon give a befitting reply,” she added.
Phogat served as inspiration for the film ‘Dangal’ starring Aamir Khan.
For those unversed, Khan also supported the award wapsi movement stating, "Historians, scientists have had a view to express. Returning awards is one way of getting your point across, everyone has the right to protest,", adding that he supported any protest that was "non-violent.”
Meanwhile, the Bombay High Court stayed the demolition at Kangana’s property saying the civic body's conduct was "malafide" and "deplorable".
A division bench of Justices S J Kathawalla and R I Chagla asked why the BMC gave only 24 hours to Ranaut to respond to its stop-work notice and went on to take action when she was outside Maharashtra.
The court was hearing a petition filed by Ranaut challenging a notice issued by the BMC for "illegal' construction at her bungalow.
Ranaut's recent remark comparing Mumbai to Pakistan- occupied-Kashmir (PoK) has drawn the ire of the ruling Shiv Sena. She had said that she feared Mumbai Police more than the "movie mafia", and would prefer security either from Himachal Pradesh or the Centre.
The 33-year-old "Queen" actor, who returned to Mumbai on Wednesday afternoon from her home state Himachal Pradesh, alleged that the Maharashtra government was targeting her because of her clash with the Shiv Sena.