Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan says celebrities are not scared of expressing their opinion, but if sometimes they choose to remain silent, it is not without a valid reason.
Khan was taking part in a panel discussion on Media - Shaping the Future and Entertainment at Magnetic Maharashtra Convergence 2018. When asked if the government should take more steps to protect the freedom of artistes' expression and whether celebrities should come up with their opinion fearlessly, he stressed that actors are not afraid of speaking their mind.
Citing the recent controversy over Sanjay Leela Bhansali's “Padmaavat” where Shri Rajput Karni Sena held violent protests demanding a ban on the film, when many film stars did not express their opinion, Khan said they simply "ignored such non-constitutional people for a greater reason".
He said, "People said why are these big stars not coming up with their opinion and hiding behind? Honestly, we don't have to hide anywhere. The simple truth is, the more prominent actors talk about such issues, the more popularity they (Karni Sena) would gain. The ideal action is to ignore them, not to talk about them."
He pointed out that people even said that big stars are busy making money. "But that's not true. We love the society that we are living in and we are creating entertainment for our people. We might at times not voice our opinion, because as a 52-year-old father, I want children and families to go and watch the film in theatres, safe and sound.
I want kids to go back home safely after watching the film, even if they dislike my film. I am more concerned about the security of my son and other kids. That is the responsibility of an entertainer."
However, SRK believes that creative people will always find a way to make their film and speak their mind.
"I can vouch for many filmmakers that nobody makes films to incite people…that is never the intention. Nobody wants to hurt any sentiment of any region, religion or others,” he said.