Coming down heavily on the alarming rise in hate crime owing to cow vigilantism and resistance to dissent in the country, Bollywood actor Huma Qureshi today said it is baffling that people are being discriminated against on the basis of their food habits and life choices.
India has been witnessing increasing number of incidents of lynching and murder of people by self-styled cow vigilante groups over rumours of cow slaughter. The most recent incident was the murder of 15-year-old Junaid Khan by a group of people on a Mathura-bound train in Ballabhgarh in Haryana after an argument escalated over seats. Junaid, who was accompanied by his two brothers, was going back home after Eid shopping when he was mocked over his skull cap and referred to as a ‘beef-eater.’ Five people have been held so far in the incident.
Huma, who was in the city to launch the trailer of first Indo-British film Partition 1947, was asked about her take on such a divide that has taken shape in the country. “It’s sad. We haven’t really learnt (from the past). It’s really sad, it’s baffling. I think people who talk like that need medical help, this is what my personal opinion is. I don’t think any God, religion, country, or the idea of nation should divide, it should unify. You should look at the unifying forces, like music, poetry, dance, culture and food. I’ve grown up in a more secular way. I was raised a Muslim but I’ve played Krishna in Janmashtami, in our school and colony skits. We used to celebrate Diwali and Eid with equal fun.”
The actor added that the only two reasons for people to have such a rigid take on the issue are- either they have “ulterior” motives or they need medical help. “When you can be together and have the best of all the worlds, why would you choose to take such an extreme point of view and miss out on these beautiful experiences and lovely friends? I think people who take such an extreme point of view, have either ulterior motives, or need medical help.”