Actor Kareena Kapoor Khan on Friday said she is "heartbroken" with the way the image of Hindi film industry has been maligned in the wake of actor Sushant Singh Rajput's death, earlier this year. Bollywood has been under a cloud since Rajput's demise in June, with accusations regarding the entertainment industry's ill-treatment of outsiders, its gate-keeping attitude and its apparent rampant drug culture as well as social media conspiracy theories regarding its functioning.
During a virtual session of 'We The Women', a one-day participatory festival created and curated by journalist Barkha Dutt, Kareena said she was troubled by the insensitivity which was displayed towards the members of the movie industry. Dutt noted that following Rajput's death the film industry came under "unprecedented scrutiny" and she felt Bollywood had to pay the price because in the past some chose fear-induced silence to avoid getting into trouble.
When asked if she feels people in the cine world need to be more vocal and fearless, Kareena said, "Whether you say or don't, the industry is anyway becoming the softest target. If you say something, you'll get brickbats, if you don't, you'll still get it."
The 40-year-old star said the trolling actors face every time they take a stand on something could be the reason why many choose to be silent.
She added it was ironical that the industry, which aims to simply entertain, was being tainted as an unhealthy space to be in.
"I feel each to his own. If actors don't want to speak up, it's understandable because look at the kind of trolling that's happening and for no reason.
"They're are spreading hatred and negativity into an industry that's actually an entertainment industry. We are here to entertain our fans, we are not here to spread hate and negativity."
Kareena, great-granddaughter of legendary actor Prithviraj Kapoor, said this perception was particularly heartbreaking as it didn't depict the reality of how the industry has helped complete outsiders, such as her family, build a legacy.
"I don't know this perception that's there about the film industry, it's heartbreaking because it's not like that. There are so many dreams made here, aspirations, look at the kind of people who have come here and built their homes, legacies.
"When Prithviraj Kapoor (great grandfather) came, or Raj Kapoor (grandfather), they were nobodies. From a simple family in Lahore, they built their entire legacy here. We have also come from somewhere and done this. Here dreams are fulfilled."
The actor added that she didn't understand why there was an attempt to run down members of the film industry, when in reality, many in the audience aren't even aware what the actors and filmmakers are going through.
"Why are we trying to bring down industry, actors, producers, filmmakers. Saying so-and-so is like this or like that. Why? I feel this has to stop. Talking about it fuels it.
"People are just commenting, saying things without understanding what a particular person is going through."