‘Never said India is intolerant’: Shah Rukh Khan

New Delhi: Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan has sought to clear the air over his controversial remarks over ‘growing intolerance’ in the country claiming that his statement was misconstrued.

In an interview with Mid Day, Shah Rukh claimed he never said India was intolerant.

“I talk about something and it is misconstrued, and I get into trouble. That’s a nuisance… Like that thing which blew up recently — I never said India is intolerant. When I was asked about it, I said I wouldn’t like talking about it, but when they insisted, I had just said that the youth should concentrate on making this a secular, progressive country,” he said.

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This comes amidst a row over his colleague Aamir Khan’s remarks suggesting that there was a climate of intolerance in India.

At the eighth edition of the Ramnath Goenka Excellence in Journalism Awards, Aamir Khan stunned the audience when he said that his wife, concerned over the prevailing conditions in the country, once suggested that their family moved out of India.

“(Wife) Kiran and I have lived all our lives in India. For the first time, she said, should we move out of India? That’s a disastrous and big statement for Kiran to make to me. She fears for her child. She fears about what the atmosphere around us will be. She feels scared to open the newspapers every day. That does indicate that there is a sense of growing disquiet,” he said.

Meanwhile, a complaint has been filed aginst the actor over his remarks at the New Ashok Nagar police station in New Delhi.

Talking to a news channel, Shah Rukh Khan had said, “There is intolerance, there is extreme intolerance… there is, I think… there is growing intolerance.”

“It is stupid… It is stupid to be intolerant and this is our biggest issue, not just an issue… Religious intolerance and not being secular in this country is the worst kind of crime that you can do as a patriot,” he said, adding that “I respect those who returned awards, but I don’t have to.”

His comments had come under severe criticism from various quarters.

Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) leader Kailash Vijayvargiya had lashed out at Khan saying that “the actor lives in India, but his heart is in Pakistan.”