Veteran actor Vikram Gokhale, on Sunday, came out in support of Bollywood actor Kangana Ranaut's controversial statement that the Independence of India in 1947 was "bheek".
Gokhale, who has made a name in theatre as well as Marathi and Hindi films, while speaking to media in Pune said, "I agree with what Kangana Ranaut has said. We got freedom in alms. It was given. Many freedom fighters were hanged and the big-wigs at that time didn't attempt to save them. They remained mere mute spectators." On Thursday, Kangana had said that India had attained freedom in 2014 when the Narendra Modi-led government came to power and described the country's Independence in 1947 as "bheekh" or alms.
Later, Kangana said on social media that she will return her Padma Shri award if anyone can prove that she has disrespected martyrs and freedom fighters. Previously, several politicians had reacted with outrage at her comments.
Maharashtra Minister and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Nawab Malik on Friday demanded that the Centre must withdraw the Padma Shri award from Bollywood actor Kangana Ranaut for her controversial remarks on the country's Independence and sought her immediate arrest. Youth Congress workers in Indore on Friday protested against the same.
Kangana had received the prestigious award from President Ram Nath Kovind at a ceremony hosted at the Rashtrapati Bhavan in the capital on November 8.