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Seriously speaking - Priyanka Chopra's column in HT today

Ever since we decided to reschedule the release of Anjaana Anjaani, I have been inundated by questions about why we took such a big step when business sense demanded that we stick to our original date of release.


I explained that given the sensitivities attached to the verdict of the Babri Masjid title suit, which was earlier scheduled on the same day, we believed that deferring our release was the right thing to do. Some got it and some didn’t, so I thought I’d shed some light on the background to my thoughts on this issue.


It’s not a question of paranoia that something drastic is going to happen but is a gesture to give the milestone event the respect and attention it deserves. The entire country will need time to come to terms with the verdict and understand the same in its entirety.


I believe that the youth of this country, which has been the beacon of change , has an important and responsible role to play in ensuring that the whole country comes to terms with the judicial process. There are opportunities for any of the parties which feel aggrieved to appeal to the higher court, and this has been emphasised by the top political leadership in the country.


Divisive forces are a reality of the society that we live in a cross the globe. On one hand, we are a nation with one of the fastest growing economies and on the other ,much like many other developing countries, we are faced with many issues that range from corruption to poverty and everything in between.


While there is good news every day, there is also an equal weight age given to everything that is not right with our world! Which is where I believe a certain element of apathy has set in...We’re tired of hearing about the corruption, the system that doesn’t do an effective job and the leadership that doesn’t care.


But we have to remember than we can make a difference, as in the case of Jessica Lal, where we stood up and channelised our opinion and our collective efforts had a monumental effect.


As the youth who are driving this country to the next level, if we decide to commit ourselves to the judicial process then we can create platforms to raise our voice in agreement or dissent rather than raise our hands in violence.


The bigger threat that the country as a whole faces is falling prey to the disruptive forces at play. Who better to stem that rot than the largest segment of our population today—the youth.


In this context, the verdict cannot be ignored and rather than go into a theatre to watch Anjaana Anjaani(as much as we would have loved you to), we would rather that you understand the outcome of the verdict. I am proud to be part of the team that has taken the difficult commercial decision to reschedule the release of the movie as a gesture of our commitment to honour the larger issues facing the nation.


I take immense pride in representing India and demonstrating to the world the unity in diversity that is part of our every day life. It’s important to continue to stand together ,discuss and debate issues and collectively pull our weight, making a contribution to society in whatever way we can.


This column was written BEFORE news that the Ayodhya verdict had been deferred by a week was out.


Priyanka Chopra's Column in Hindustan Times- 24 September 2010Priyanka Chopra's Column in Hindustan Times- 24 September 2010