Chandigarh, Punjab: Bir Devinder Singh former deputy speaker of Punjab Vidhan Sabha on Monday warned against over playing the incident of detention of film actor Shah Rukh Khan by US airport authorities. The text of his press statement is reproduced below.
“The Statement of Ambika Soni Union I&B Minister on the frisking of Shah Rukh Khan at Newark Air Port in New Jersey (US) is highly irresponsible. It is not for a senior Minister to speak in such a casual manner while commenting upon an incident which smack of racism and occurred on a foreign land. I do concede her legitimate right as I&B Minister to give her reaction on the treatment meted out to a Bollywood super star but calling for a tit for tat reaction sounds unwise. Indian people are already suffering racial discrimination in Australia, if Union Ministers would incite people for Tit for Tat reaction in India.
The statement of the Minister and the out of proportion hype created by the Indian media have the potentials to generate heat, which could eventually lead to a racial conflict between Indians and Americans. Thus the issue blown out of proportion may have serious and far reaching repercussion for Indians settled in US. They may face racial conflict in US if we make a mountain out of the mole. Our super stars are ostensibly pampered lot of people and they unnecessary create fuss out of nothing just to invite the over attention of the Media.
We all must understand that in US, there is no special class of citizens exists as VIPs or Celebrities. They treat all the people with equal respect and concern when you are in the queue. As we all know that such strong and complex set of security parameters never existed in US on the Air Ports, before the horrendous 9/11 incident, that shook the entire World and took lives of so many innocent men, women and children irrespective of their identity or religion. We must appreciate that frisking on the air ports emanates out of the security constraints and is part of their strict micro- security drill. After suffering so much, no Nation, worth the salt, can afford to be complacent with regard to the security of her people, whether its at the Air Port or otherwise.
We may recall that when Punjab was passing through the terrific era of militancy how Sikh families coming from various part of the World to their homeland were subjected to frisking and humiliations at the Delhi Air Port. So many of them were even repatriated back to the destination from where they started their journey. At that point of time no one raised the voice that innocent Sikhs and their families are being harassed and humiliated beyond logic. Why so much of hue and cry if Shah Rukh Khan has been frisked at Newark Air Port by US security agencies. Who would be responsible if any untoward incident of the magnitude of 9/11 happens again? So we should not grumble over the security measures put in place on the international Air Ports for the safety and security of the passengers and for the internal security of their country as well. We should give up the habit of making a mountain out of the mole”.
Source: Punjab Newsline