Mumbai: They might chase them away, blame them for snatching jobs meant for the soil's sons, ascribe the state's ills, including malaria, to them, accuse them of eating into its resources, thrash them, burn buses and attack theatres for them, but when it comes to business, and show business at that, the MNS seems to be more agreeable with north India.
For, the wife of an MNS office bearer is producing a Bhojpuri film. Nanda Baviskar nee Shelar, wife of the vice-president of MNS Chitrapat Kamachari Sena, Satish Baviskar, is producing the Bhojpuri movie, 'Tridev'. This when MNS workers in the city have attacked movie theatres for screening Bhojpuri films in the past. But Baviskar sees no contradiction in the party's ideology and the spouse's production. In a tone of conviction, he claimed that his wife is doing nothing wrong; if anything, she is teaching entrepreneurship to the Marathi manoos.
"What is wrong in producing a Bhojpuri film, when a Dubey, Chaubey or a Mishra can make Marathi films and mint money? Why can't a Marathi man produce a Bhojpuri film, make profits and bring them to the state? The difference here is the North Indians make money here and send it to their home states, while Marathi manoos can make money from there and bring it to the state," Baviskar rationalised.
The film is expected to be released in another six months. It warrants a mention here that Baviskar himself has been in the film production line from 1997 and has been part of the making of another Bhojpuri film, Devar Bhabhi. "I have even written a letter to senior party leaders telling them to encourage Marathi manoos to produce Bhojpuri films to earn money and bring it to the state. I explained to them that just the way North Indians take money away from here, we can earn profits from them. I have also informed them that my wife is producing a film," he said. Clearly, the party cadres know better than to let politics interfere with economics.
MNS gen secretary Shirish Parkar said, "I have to discuss all aspects of the matter with my seniors in the party. Only then will I be able to comment." MNS VP Vaagesh Saraswat said, "He has informed the party about the production. It's just business. Besides, the film is being produced by his wife, not him."
Just like old times
Nanda Shelar's present movie, 'Tridev', will have popular Bhojpuri stars such as Pavan Singh and Viraj Bhat among others. The movie will have three protagonists like the 1989 Hindi film of the same name directed by Rajiv Rai. It is likely to be released during the festival of Chhat.
July 1, 2008: Around 10 MNS members assaulted Deepak Talkies in Lower Parel where a Bhojpuri film, Banke Bihari MLA, was being screened. Party workers stormed the cinema, just before the afternoon show was about to start. They demonstrated against the screening of a Bhojpuri film and gave the manager a memorandum, demanding that Marathi films should be shown. Eight people were arrested for the act.
February 3, 2008: More than 150 suspected MNS activists attacked Pratap Talkies in Thane for showing Bhojpuri film Saiyan se Solah Singaar. They had ransacked the theatre, pulled out the film's print reel, and burnt it. They also destroyed the theatre seats.