Karan Johar apologising to Raj a stunt: Chavan

Karan Johar apologising to Raj a stunt: Chavan Spicezee Bureau

Mumbai: Expressing displeasure with Karan Johar, Maharashtra CM Ashok Chavan said on Friday the filmmaker shouldn’t have apologised to MNS supreme Raj Thackeray for saying Bombay in his latest flick ‘Wake up Sid!’

“This is a filmi stunt. Karan should have approached the state police,” he said, adding that they were capable of providing security to filmmakers.

Earlier in the day, eminent film producer Karan Johar had visited Raj Thackeray’s house and apologised to him for the characters in his film saying Bombay instead of Mumbai.

‘Wake Up Sid’ hit theatres on today and stars Ranbir Kapoor and Konkona Sen, Anupam Kher and Supriya Pathak. Directed by debutante filmmaker Ayaan Mukherjee, the film has been produced by Karan Johar's Dharma Productions.

Known for its ‘Marathi Manoos’ agenda and political militancy, MNS has once again raised its ‘Amchi Mumbai’ tirade and has blasted ‘Wake Up Sid’ for referring Mumbai as Bombay.

Karan reached Raj Thackeray’s house in the morning and apologized for referring to Mumbai city as Bombay in film.

After MNS activists asked the cinema hall owners to stop the screening of the movie released today, 37-year-old Johar drove to Thackeray's residence in central Mumbai for a 20-minute meeting with him following which he said, "It was a genuine mistake on our part...Henceforth, we will use Mumbai instead of Bombay. We have apologised for the same."

"We had no intention to hurt anyone's feelings. We will put a disclaimer in the film (over the name Mumbai, instead of Bombay)," he told reporters here.

Johar, who has produced the film, said "The city of Mumbai is referred to as Bombay in a conversation between Ranbir and Konkona, some 12 times (in the movie). I explained to him that the error happened because of the colloquial parlance used in the film and he understood the point."

Asked if this was a publicity stunt, Johar said, "There are several other marketing platforms for publicity of the film. This was not a publicity stunt."

Emerging from the meeting a short while ago, an aggressive Raj said that such things (using 'Bombay' instead of Mumbai) would not be tolerated and Karan has realised his mistake.

"He has sought time from us to rectify the error. We shall wait for three-four days before the next step," Raj told mediapersons outside his residence.

To a query, he said that not only the directors, but all persons connected with filmmaking and other fields must ensure that Mumbai is used in place of 'Bombay'.

"When the names of other cities like Delhi and Chennai are not changed, why should Mumbai be change to 'Bombay'?" he thundered.

"We will add the disclaimer nation-wide as well as in the international releases. It will take us 3 to 4 days to rectify the mistake. We explained that infrastructural changes will require time and he agreed," said Johar.

The screening of the movie was also stopped by MNS workers at a multiplex in Pune.

The film is a coming of the age drama and revolves around the life of a college student Sid, who is a lazy unmotivated slacker who takes for granted his father's hard earned money and spends time attending parties and sleeping late in the morning.

But Sid comes to take stock of his life after a series of unfortunate incidents.

It is not for the first time that MNS has had a run in with Bollywood. Earlier, mega star Amitabh Bachchan had to apologise last year for his actress wife Jaya Bachchan's anti-Marathi remarks after MNS party workers allegedly stopped the screening of his movie 'The Last Lear'.

Shah Rukh Khan's 'Billu' had faced similar problems last year with protests allegedly by MNS over certain words in a song in the movie.