New Delhi [India], Oct. 24 : With 'Ae Dil Hai Mushkil' finally being cleared for release after the movie underwent a massive onslaught for having Pakistani actor Fawad Khan in it, Islamabad envoy Abdul Basit on Monday said that he was glad the movie was out of hot waters.
Speaking here at the Institute of Peace and Conflict, the Pakistani envoy made a pun saying, "Glad to know Karan Johar's film is out of 'mushkil'," and wished the audience a happy Diwali.
Asserting that Pakistan has never tried to snap cultural relations with India, Basit further said that artistes from his country have been facing a range of issues in India.
He also said that for more than a decade, Pakistani has been enjoying Indian entertainment channels like Zee and Star.
Talking about the ban on Indian channels, he added, "I just think this is short lived." On October 1st, two days after India's movie industry body banned Pakistani artists and technicians from working in India, Islamabad banned the broadcast of all Indian television channels in Pakistan.
Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) said strict action would be taken if TV channels and distribution networks failed to implement the ban after October 15.
It said it has been receiving complaints that several local private channels were showing Indian talk shows, reality programmes and dramas without permission.
Earlier, decks were cleared for the release of 'Ae Dil Hai Mushkil' on Saturday after a meeting of film producer Karan Johar with Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis and MNS chief Raj Thackeray in Mumbai.
"Every producer who has cast a Pakistani actor must contribute Rs 5 crore to the Army welfare fund," MNS chief Raj Thackeray said after the meeting.
Thackeray further said that producers will have to give in writing that they will not take Pakistani actors in their films in future.
Speaking to the reporters after the meeting, Mukesh Bhatt said that it was "positive and constructive and 'Ae Dil Hai Mushkil' will release as per the schedule." "We discussed the unfortunate events related to the film's release.
I shared the film industry's emotions regarding the entire issue. We are Indians first and then comes our business," he said. Ranbir Kapoor, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Anushka Sharma who are starring in the film, will also contribute a portion of its revenue to the Army welfare fund, Bhatt said, adding "We owe this to the Army." Bhatt also said that they have assured Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis that neither the Producers' Guild nor any filmmaker will work with any Pakistani artiste or technician in the future.
Also, the Producers' Guild will call a meeting to pass a resolution on not working with Pakistani artists and a copy of the same would be sent to the Information and Broadcasting Ministry as well as the chief minister, he said.
However, taking on his cousin and Raj Thackeray for asking filmmakers to donate Rs 5 crore to the Army, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday said the Indian armed forces do not need ransom money.