Mumbai: Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan on Tuesday lamented that the proposed Metro rail segment passing by his home 'Prateeksha' in suburban Mumbai would invade his privacy, triggering sharp reactions from political parties.
"It is finally happening. The Metro rail being laid over the metropolis called Mumbai, some under the ground, some above over large tracts of cement structures is taking shape. There is general happiness from the commuters, for, the misery of crowded locals and the uncertainties of the three-wheeler or the yellow-black cab shall hopefully be greatly reduced.
"But here is the killer! it's going to roll over Prateeksha! So bye bye privacy and hello fellow traveller," he wrote in his blog.
His remarks drew flak from political parties such as Shiv Sena, Congress and MNS.
Terming the statement as "unfortunate", Mumbai suburban guardian minister Naseem Khan of Congress said, "His remarks are very unfortunate. He should care for interests of other people also. Why should the convenience of one person take precedence over that of lakhs of commuters."
Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said everyone wanted privacy but convenience of the people cannot be ignored.
MNS spokesperson Nitin Sardesai said development projects could not be stopped for the sake of an individual. If Bachchan did not object when the project was approved, then why is he doing so now, he asked.
The Maharashtra Government has decided to build the 32 km long Charkop-Bandra-Maknkurd metro route through MMRDA and 22 lakh passengers will benefit, Khan said.
When major projects like JJ flyover in south Mumbai or the LBS Marg flyover were built, they inconvenienced some people. But they did not protest as it was for the larger public good," the minister said.
Mumbai is an international city and 80 per cent of its population lives in suburbs, Khan said.
"Bachchan is a celebrity. He has an image, which is fine. But is it okay to criticise the entire project just because it hampers one's privacy," he said.
"His bungalow is not being affected. It is just that the route will pass through the area," the minister said. PTI