Actor-turned politician Kamal Haasan praised Mahatma Gandhi today, calling him “a superstar”, adding, “I cannot change my hero”.
Haasan was speaking about the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi, when he called him his hero.
At an event in Chennai, Haasan recalled an instance from Mahatma Gandhi’s life, when he lost his slipper while travelling on a crowded train.
“Mahatma Gandhi is a superstar. While waving at the crowds from a train, he once lost his slipper. He also threw the other one away and reasoned that the pair could prove to be of use to someone,” Haasan said at the event organized for a film titled ‘Ottha Seruppu,’ which means single chappal in English.
Haasan mentioned that he came across this anecdote while researching for his film ‘Hey Ram’. He came to know that his spectacles and a slipper “went missing during the melee’, ostensibly referring to Gandhi’s assassination.
Moved by the anecdote, he chose to make a film on this theme. “So I created a scene where Saketram (the lead played by himself) takes it (slipper) and keeps it till his death,” he said.
In reference to his earlier remarks, he said, “I cannot change my hero and I can’t accept the villain as hero,” he said.
Earlier, Haasan landed in a row, when he said in Tamil Nadu that “free India’s first extremist was a Hindu”, whose name was Nathuram Godse. “There it starts”, he added chronicling the beginning of extremism.
The remarks created a massive controversy with BJP and AIADMK criticizing him and cases filed against him. The remarks didn’t go well with some in the BJP including Pragya Thakur, who went on to claim “Godse was a patriot”.
She, however, was forced to apologize after criticism from BJP top brass.
Following her suit BJP’s Anantkumar Hegde and Nalin Kateel stoked further controversy with their pro-Godse comments. All three have been asked to provide an explanation by the BJP leadership.
(with inputs from PTI)