Film producer Bhushan Kumar today denied attending the government’s dinner at a luxury hotel in Mumbai on Sunday to discuss the Citizenship Amendment. The event invite was from Union Minister Piyush Goyal and BJP’s National Vice President Baijayant ‘Jay’ Panda.
At the trailer launch of film “Malang“, Bhushan Kumar disassociated himself from the event and said, “I was in Grand Hyatt. That doesn’t mean I was in a meeting or something,” This was after a reporter asked the cast and crew about the meeting.
Bhushan Kumar not only arrived at the same time as the other celebrities who attended the meeting but was also thanked by BJP’s Tarun Rathi on Twitter along with others who were present.
श्री @itsBhushanKumar श्री #राजकुमार_संतोषी,श्री #राहुल_रवेल, श्री @RameshTaurani श्री @prasoonjoshi_ श्री @kunalkohli श्री @RoopkumarRathod श्री @gargankur श्री #अजय_चौधरी, श्री #मोहित_डागा, श्री #हिमांशु_सोनी, श्री #जय_वर्मा, श्री #अनुज_चौधरी, व सभी सम्मानित मित्रों का आभार। pic.twitter.com/orqpHZt7bM
— Tarun Rathi (@ITarunRathi) January 6, 2020
Among those who showed up at the meeting were filmmakers Ritesh Sidhwani, Kunal Kohli, Rajkumar Santoshi, Anil Sharma, Ramesh Taurani, Rahul Rawail, Censor Board chief Prasoon Joshi, singers Shaan and Kailash Kher, composer Anu Malik, and actors Ranvir Shorey and Urvashi Rautela.
Bhushan Kumar’s denial despite evidence of his participation in the event surprised many.
Filmmaker Rahul Rawail, who was at the meeting, told NDTV, “Bhushan Kumar was very much a part of the CAA meeting at Grand Hyatt. I was also present to understand what CAA is.”
The meeting took place around the time mayhem erupted at Delhi’s Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) as masked attackers armed with sledgehammers and iron rods entered the campus and beat students and teachers.
Amid nationwide shock and anger, many film celebrities publicly denounced the JNU campus attack.
According to reports, many others were invited to the Sunday meeting but didn’t attend. Actor Richa Chadha and filmmaker Kabir Khan were among the absentees.
The day after this meeting a huge turnout of Bollywood was seen at Carter Road in Mumbai, this was a peaceful protest in solidarity with the students who were attacked at various universities. Among those who attended were Anurag Kashyap, Anubhav Sinha, Vishal Bhardwaj, Rekha Bhardwaj, Zoya Akhtar, Sudhir Mishra, Richa Chadha, Taapsee Pannu, Ali Fazal, Gauhar Khan, Hansal Mehta, Swanand Kirkire, Kunal Kamra, Mallika Dua and many others.
Bollywood is sharply divided over the government’s new Citizenship (Amendment) Act or CAA, which makes religion the criteria for citizenship for the first time. The government says the law will help non-Muslim migrants from three neighboring nations become Indian citizens if they fled religious persecution and entered India before 2015. Activists, celebrities and opposition parties say it violates the constitution and discriminates against Muslims.