Bollywood actor Pooja Bhatt reacted to the claims made by BJP leaders that actors are paid to walk with Rahul Gandhi in the Bharat Jodo Yatra. Quoting from Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, the actor wrote: “They’re certainly entitled to think that, and they’re entitled to full respect for their opinions… but before I can live with other folks I’ve got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn’t abide by majority rule is a person’s conscience” — decimating the claims. Actor Sushant Singh who also walked with Rahul Gandhi and claimed that to be his first presence at any political rally shared Pooja Bhatt’s tweet.
Apart from Pooja Bhatt who joined the yatra in Hyderabad and Sushant Singh, several Bollywood personalities including Amol Palekar, Sandhya Gokhale, Ria Sen, Rashmi Desai, Akanksha Puri joined Bharat Jodo Yatra in its Maharashtra leg. BJP leader Nitesh Rane shared a WhatsApp forward claiming that the actors are being paid by the Congress to take the walk. BJP IT cell chief Amit Malviya too shared the screenshot and questioned the credibility of those who are “willing to associate with Rahul Gandhi even for some money”.
The screenshot shared was purported to be the brief for the actors who will be joining the yatra in Madhya Pradesh. Asking for the ‘best possible cost for the 15-minute guest appearance’, the message stated that the actors can choose their own time slot and the travel and logistics will be taken care of.
The Congress dismissed the claims and said such ‘bogus WhatsApp’ forwards with no name and no number only prove how desperate the BJP is to discredit the yatra. “It is BJP which masters the art of arm-twisting celebrities to portray artificial support for them, not Congress. Don’t we remember tweets of celebrities on petrol, diesel rates during the UPA government and during farmers’ protest?” Maharashtra Congress leader Sachin Sawant said.
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