In a Twitter town hall organised by a media house on the occasion of his birthday, Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan spoke about issues that have been making headlines for the past few weeks — like writers, artists and scientists returning awards to protest what they see as rising intolerance in the country — and said there is an atmosphere of “extreme intolerance” in the country.
“People put words in the air even before thinking. Intolerance religiously…not being secular in this country is the worst crime you can do as a patriot,” the Bollywood superstar said at a town hall with India Today television channel.
When asked if he will return an award to protest an issue, he said, “I have not been in a situation like that. But I respect the people. If they think this gesture is going to turn things around, it is very brave, very honest.”
Being a star, he said, it was tough for him to take a stand on every moral issue.
“As far as I am concerned, I have not participated in something as meaningful as they have…We may talk about freedom of speech, but people come outside my house and throw stones…If I do take a stand, I’ll stand by it,” he added.