Criticising Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his silence over the murder of senior Kannada editor and activist Gauri Lankesh, Prakash Raj said it was “disappointing” to see the prime minister follow those celebrating Lankesh’s murder on social media.
“Gauri’s killers have not been caught yet. But what is more disappointing is people celebrating her murder over social media spreading hatred,” Raj said on Sunday speaking at the 11th state meet of Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI) held in Bengaluru, according to IANS.
“Some of these people who celebrated her (Gauri’s) murder are followed by our Prime Minister (Narendra Modi) on Twitter. We have a PM who shuts his eyes to this,” he said.
The actor did not leave out Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in his speech and said, “When you look at the kind of statements he (Adityanath) makes, you don’t understand whether he’s a chief minister or a priest.”
According to the Deccan Chronicle, the actor said that Modi’s silence proves that “he is trying to become a bigger actor than me.” He also said that the prime minister’s continued silence is worrying and that he does not mind returning his National Awards if the PM remains silent on the issue, added the report.
“Is he trying to endorse cruelty espoused by some of his followers,” he was quoted as saying.
Later, clarifying Raj’s statement, Muneer Katipalla, the state president of DYFI told IANS: “It was only a satirical comment that Prakash Raj made referring to how Adityanath was trying to act like a chief minister.”
Bengaluru-based journalist Gauri Lankesh was shot dead at her residence by three unidentified men on September 5.
Prakash Raj has received five National Awards, including Best Supporting Actor for Mani Ratnam’s Iruvar, Best Actor for Kanchivaram, Special Jury Award for Anthahpuram and Best Film award for Puttakkana Highway.
With inputs from IANS