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a star is revisited

It is not often that one comes across a successful mainstream Bollywood hero who shuns the film media for more than a decade and still survives to tell the tale.

Amir Khan is one such rare specimen of the species called movie stars that answers to that description.

I hate that man. For more reasons than I care to mention. Right from his split with his first wifer to his unwillingness to do more than one movie at a time to the undue importance his characters receive in any movie he does, all of these combine to give him an image of a stuffshirt who is too full of himself.

So it came as a rude jolt out of the blue to find that not only had Amir Khan given an interview to the press, it was also full of insightful, well thought and nicely worded comments on a broad range of topics including politics and journalistic ethics. He did not flinch from naming the publications and other parties involved as he recounted various instances where the mainstream media has gone astray.

What I found extremely gratifying was his expression of disgust at the way news channels of the day have started using background music to accentuate their reporting of tragic occurrences. Another point where I found myself in total agreement with him was his protest against the way Hindustan Times published the transcripts of Salman Khan's telephone conversations with Aishwarya Rai in its inaugural edition in Mumbai, citing it as a clear example of invasion of a person's privacy. So true and so relevant in today's times of sting operations and MMS scandals.

Such refreshing candor from a mainstream Bollywood hero ? I am impressed. Go pick your copy of the weekly Tehelka's 1st April edition to read it all.

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