Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Meera bye: Mush fines actress for getting mushy on Indian screen

During his trips abroad, Parvez Musharraf loves to boast about how he pulled his country out of a dangerous medieval morass, the truth is that women in his country are still measured with medieval tapes.

While Pakistani men can make merry from Islamabad to Eternity, a Pakistani Meera cannot even enact a kissing scene. And if the man she's enacting kissing happens to be an Indian, Allah have mercy. Because, Musharraf's modern government will not.

The Pakistani government has slapped a heavy fine on popular Pakistani actress Meera (the picture pops up)for performing a kissing scene in Bollywood film Nazar. And it's not stopping there. The government now plans to ban Pakistani actors from appearing in Indian movies.

The ministry of culture has imposed a heavy fine (the amount not disclosed yet, still in purdah) on Meera as her actions were against "Islamic ethics and moral values," an information ministry spokesman was quoted as saying in reports on Wednesday. Yes you read right, it's the government's ministry of culture and not some rabid Taliban turbaned mullah. And by the way, Pakistani actors (male ones) have acted in Indian films, snogged with Indian actresses, and that never violated their ethics and moral values.

Meera is seen kissing Ashmit Patel in Mahesh Bhatt's new film Nazar, which has prompted the government to impose the fine. The government is also considering imposition of a ban on Pakistani actors from acting in Indian films following protests over some "vulgar" scenes featuring Meera in Bhatt's film.

Meera recently claimed in Mumbai that she had received threatening phone calls from people claiming to represent religious groups in Pakistan for acting in Indian films.

She is the first film actress to speak about such a problem as a number of Pakistani film personalities have stepped up their association with the Mumbai film industry.

Several Indian film actors have also been visiting Pakistan in periodic intervals to interact with the local film industry. Leading the pack of Indian industrywallahs has been Mahesh Bhatt. Ironical?


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