‘Veena doesn’t represent Pakistan’

Published: February 7, 2012
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Singer-cum-actor Ali Zafar says he will not do anything that will cast a shadow on his country. PHOTO: FILE

Singer-cum-actor Ali Zafar says he will not do anything that will cast a shadow on his country. PHOTO: FILE

Pakistani actor Veena Malik is controversy’s favourite child, but it would be unfair to judge the entire country on the basis of what she does in India, singer-cum-actor Ali Zafar told IANS.

“You have to understand that she’s an individual and you can’t judge the entire community on the basis of one person’s behaviour. You shouldn’t even judge Pakistan through me. The whole Pakistan is not like Ali Zafar or Veena Malik,” said Zafar.

“There are such individuals in every entertainment industry. India also has women who ride on controversies. It happens everywhere. It even happens in Hollywood,” he added.

Malik came into the limelight after her link up with tainted Pakistani bowler Mohammad Asif. She rose to fame in India making headlines for her alleged link-up with her “Bigg Boss” inmate, Indian actor Ashmit Patel, in the fourth season of the reality show. A few months ago, Veena appeared in a bold, topless photoshoot with FHM India magazine and became a hot topic for Pakistani and Indian media.

Zafar believes that being involved in controversies is not the best method to boost one’s career. “I think one should avoid controversies as long as possible, they may help you in the short-run, but I don’t think those who are talented need controversies to boost their career,” he said. “It’s always good to stay away so that you can work smoothly. You try to stay away from trouble for your own sake and for the sake of other people. I think anybody who comes from Pakistan to India should be cautious and conscious, otherwise it puts others in a bad light,” reports IANS.

Sticking to his mantra, Zafar said he makes sure he doesn’t do anything that gives a bad name to his country. “I pay all my taxes. I make sure all paper work is in place and streamlined. I want to work in a manner so that I stay away from controversies,” he said. “Whatever films I do, I make sure that I don’t do scenes or say dialogues or do stuff that could hurt people back home. In my capacity, I try and keep everyone happy but that’s just me. Everybody has their own style of working,” he added.

Not mixing film with politics

Recently Indian film-makers responded to Shiv Sena founder and Chief Bal Thackeray’s criticism on Veena Malik’s photoshoot and his request to send Malik back to Pakistan. Film-maker Rahul Dholakia, who may cast Pakistan television actor Imran Abbas in one of his films said, “I don’t care about the political parties. If my film needs a Pakistan artist, then I will sign him,” newspakistan.pk quoted him as saying.

According to newspakistan.pk, film-maker Mahesh Bhatt, who casted Pakistani actor Meera in his film Nazar, has also expressed his feelings. “Back in the season of hate, targeting a Pakistani entertainer was profitable — it got you instant attention. However, the situation has drastically changed now. Pakistan is no longer heading our hate list. Today, hating a Pakistani actor is not profitable because it does not grab headlines.”

Published in The Express Tribune, February 8th, 2012.

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Reader Comments (12)

  • dv sikka
    Feb 7, 2012 - 10:24PM

    Veena is a material girl like Madonna.

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  • reema
    Feb 7, 2012 - 11:00PM

    she’s an actress not an actor

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  • Satan
    Feb 7, 2012 - 11:06PM

    uff madonna ka comparison veena se :D

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  • Feb 8, 2012 - 12:05AM

    Veena seriously doesn’t represent Pakistan… there is more to pakistan than Veena Malik. We have so many other great artists…!
    She does this sorta stuff to get attention..
    We can assume that she belongs to the dark side of our film industry but it certainly doesn’t mean that she represents the whole of it..Recommend

  • manish
    Feb 8, 2012 - 1:00AM

    @reema:
    thsese days even for an actress journalists normally use the word “actor” just for gender neutrality.

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  • Heer
    Feb 8, 2012 - 2:24AM

    Well said Ali Zafar!

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  • anna
    Feb 8, 2012 - 3:13AM

    Yeah ! Ali zafer … you are right that BOTH OF YOU ARE NOT THE ACTUAL REPRESENTATION of PAKISTAN ! we are not what you two are ;))Recommend

  • narayana murthy
    Feb 8, 2012 - 7:55AM

    I think Indians judge Pakistanis based on people like Hamid Gul, Hafeez Saeed and Osama Bin Laden (after all, he died an unofficial Pakistani!!!) and not by Ali Zafar or Veena Malik.

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  • Mard-e-Haq
    Feb 8, 2012 - 9:06AM

    So, Ali Zafar, who does represent Pakistan? Hafiz Saeed?

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  • BlackJack
    Feb 8, 2012 - 10:11AM

    @narayana murthy:
    It goes both ways. It is refreshing that Pakistani artists can come to India to perform, and the fact that they have managed to create and defend that niche (especially on the music front) shows that their contribution is unique, and of value. On the other hand, the Pak entertainment scene also boasts of stars like Hamid Gul and Zaid Hamid, and I am sure that they help in boosting TRPs over there as well – as well as attracting a sizeable Indian following comprising of people like you and me :).

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  • Adnan
    Feb 8, 2012 - 1:41PM

    @dv sikka:
    yeah except Madonna actually has talent

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  • Salman
    Feb 9, 2012 - 4:59AM

    Pakistan has Veena Malik
    India has Rakhi Sawant/Poonam Pandey
    US has kim kardashians

    Attention seeking S*ts

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