Friday Nov 19, 2021
Rohit Shetty's third addition to his much-celebrated cop film franchise, Sooryavanshi, is facing immense backlash for its rigid views and representation of Muslims.
The idea of 'Good Muslim vs. Bad Muslim, that is conventiently' portrayed in the film, is being dubbed problematic and dangerous in a world that support peace and harmony.
Indian journalist from Washington Post, Rana Ayyub, says that Rohit Shetty's film "stokes the dangerous 'love jihad' conspiracy, which paints Muslim men as colluding to seduce or kidnap Hindu women or girls and convert them to Islam."
She adds that the movie's "success contributes to the climate of hate and discrimination that India’s estimated 200 million Muslims must face everyday."
"The film does not even pretend to mask its agenda — which is the right-wing Hindu nationalist agenda of Modi’s government," wrote Ayyub.
Responding to her comments on Twitter, President Arif Alvi deemed Rohit Shetty's take on Islam 'dangerous' and 'destructive.'
According to Indian publication The Quint, Sooryavanshi "criminalises normal Muslim behaviour" and associates "things that a large number of Indian Muslims feel, say or do in their daily life" with terrorists.
Responding to journalist Rana Ayyub's post, British-Pakistani actor Riz Ahmed also expressed his disgust over the Akshay Kumar starrer.
Meanwhile, New York Times also deemed the Rohit Shetty's action-drama 'tone-deaf' and irresponsible.
"Shetty’s crusading state warriors, whose violence and vigilante tactics are played for laughs and hoots, have always seemed a bit tone-deaf, but Sooryavanshi veers into apologism: the film is rife with gleeful scenes of police brutality and pernicious stereotypes about Muslims," wrote journalist Devika Girish.
Actor and Tamgha-e-Imtiaz Mehwish Hayat, too called out the film and urged Bollywood to produce film that support harmony instead of spreading Islamophobia.