Jaya Bachchan’s Defence of Bollywood Gets Support From Taapsee Pannu, Hema Malini, Others

·4-min read
NEW DELHI, INDIA - MARCH 5: Rajya Sabha MP Jaya Bachchan leaves after attending Budget Session at Parliament House, in New Delhi, India on Thursday, March 05, 2020. (Photo by Sonu Mehta/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)
Jaya Bachchan (Photo by Sonu Mehta/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

Actors Taapsee Pannu, Dia Mirza, Sonam Kapoor, and Tisca Chopra were among the Bollywood stars who supported actor Jaya Bachchan’s statement in Parliament defending the Hindi film industry.

Jaya, who is a Rajya Sabha MP, made her statement during the Zero Hour in the Parliament on Tuesday. (Zero Hour in the Lok Sabha or Rajya Sabha refers to the time granted to an MP by the Speaker to raise issues of public importance, before the regular business for the day begins at the Parliament.)

Although she did not take any names, it was obvious that Jaya was responding to Marathi actor and Lok Sabha MP Ravi Kishan’s allegation (on Monday) that several people in Bollywood are addicted to drugs. “The NCB has been doing very good work. I urge the central government to take strict action against the culprits soon. Give them a befitting punishment and bring an end to this conspiracy by neighbouring countries,” Kishan had said.

Jaya said in the Parliament on Tuesday, “Just because of a few people, you cannot tarnish the whole industry... I was really embarrassed and ashamed that yesterday one our members in the Lok Sabha, who is from the industry, spoke against the film industry.”

The noise around drug abuse in Bollywood started after actor Kangana Ranaut recently alleged that most people in the industry are drug addicts and that the film industry is a “gutter.” She had said this in connection with the judicial investigation into actor Rhea Chakraborty, girlfriend of actor Sushant Singh Rajput who died by suicide in June, for alleged possession of drugs. (Rhea was arrested by the Narcotics Control Bureau last week.)

In response to Kangana’s comment, Jaya added in her speech, “People in the entertainment industry are being flogged by social media. People who made their names in the industry have called it a gutter. I completely disagree. I hope that the government tells such people not to use this kind of language…”

Kangana gave a scathing reply to Jaya on Twitter:

Agreeing with Jaya, actor and BJP MP Hema Malini told NDTV, “Bollywood is a beautiful and creative world. This is an art and culture industry. I have great respect for this industry. Whoever has risen in this industry has done so on the basis of their hard work, talent, and luck. You cannot tarnish the image of Bollywood. These are small instances, like a stain on a piece of cloth; we must wash it away.”

However, on social media, Ravi Kishan has defended his statement and expressed surprise at Jaya’s statement.

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