On Tuesday, members of the Raj Thackeray-led MNS stalled the shooting of Amitabh Bachchan’s film Bbuddah that was going on at United Mills in
Mumbai alleging foreigners with no work permit being part of a song sequence.
The co-producer of ‘Bbuddah’ Puri Jagannadh on Wednesday sent an apology letter to Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray accepting that some foreign dancers were without work permit and the visas of two junior artistes had expired.
“We want to apologize for the neglect and assure you that this shall not happen in the future and will perform all activities as per the law without hurting anyone’s sentiments,” Puri said in the letter addressed to Raj Thackeray.
Yes, unfortunate, goonda raj and all that.
An interesting thing about MNS is that they seldom get into issues where the law doesn’t already agree with them: Marathi signboards, foreign dancers working without a work visa, drivers without licenses or hawkers without permits. Granted, this is almost always accompanied by violence.
In this case, working without work permits is an offense and to my knowledge (based on browsing websites like Times Of India) they did not threaten or beat anyone (It is a big deal for which they need to be applauded. It is the equivalent of a godman in India not fooling people.). What more, they were vindicated at the end. The story makes for a fine sound bite but there is nothing wrong with what the MNS did here.
That said, MNS being on the right side of existing laws doesn’t make them agreeable. Compulsory Marathi signboards for businesses is an old law which no one was abiding by and no politician had the balls to scrap. MNS had the shrewdness to use it to their advantage.
Businesses are private property and businessmen are smart enough to know their target audience. They ought to be left alone. Further, Maharashtrians don’t have tiny penises. They don’t need signboards in Marathi to compensate for it. (If this assumption is incorrect, please comment below with your full name.)