Now, she has launched a broadside against Hindi film veteran Shabana Azmi in the wake of the terrorist attack in Pulwama.
Azmi and husband Javed Akhtar decided to cancel their visit to a literature festival in Karachi, Pakistan, following the attack that killed at least 40 police personnel. Ranaut, however, accused the multiple National award-winning actress of hypocrisy.
Speaking to the website Pinkvilla.com, Ranaut said, “People like Shabana Azmi calling for a halt on cultural exchange, they are the ones who promote the ‘Bharat tere tukde honge‘ gangs. Why did they organize an event in Karachi in the first place when Pakistani artistes have been banned after the Uri attack [of September 2016] and now they are trying to save face?”
Ranaut went on to describe Azmi and some others in the film industry as anti-national. “The film industry is full of such anti-nationals who boost the enemy’s morale in many ways, but right now is the time to focus on decisive action. Pakistan ban is not the focus, Pakistan destruction is,” she said.
This, of course, is not the first time Ranaut, herself a National award-winning actress, has targeted Azmi. Towards the end of 2017, Azmi had started a signature campaign in support of Deepika Padukone who had received death threats from a group styled as the Shree Rajput Karni Sena which was demanding a ban on her film Padmaavat.
While many Hindi film personalities signed the petition, Ranaut refused to do so on account of Azmi’s involvement in left-wing politics.
Ranaut also lashed out at those who still want peace with Pakistan. “Bharat is bleeding today, the killing of our sons is like a dagger in our gut. Anyone who lectures about non-violence and peace at this time should be painted black, put on a donkey, and slapped by everyone on the streets,” she said.
Azmi gave a dignified response to Ranaut’s over-the-top statements without naming her. “You really think at a time like this a personal attack on me can be of any significance when the entire country stands as one in our grief and in condemning the dastardly Pulwama attack? May god bless her,” she said in a statement to the website In.com.