India Masala

Bollywood and culture in an emerging India

A House for Mr Hashmi

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When you are a Bollywood actor in Mumbai, doors open automatically — or at least so you would think. But as Shabana Azmi, Aamir Ali and now Emraan Hashmi have discovered, there are some doors which remain shut.

Hashmi has complained to the Minorities Commission of Maharashtra that he and members of his family were not allowed to buy a flat in the posh locality of Bandra — because of his religion.

In his complaint, the actor said he was stopped from completing a purchase of a flat in Bandra’s Pali Hill because the society did not want to allow Muslims.

On the face of it, it seems ridiculous. What’s more, it is illegal.

Abraham Mathai, Vice-Chairman of the state minorities’ commission, told Reuters it would recommend legal action against the building secretary and chairperson if what Hashmi said did happen.

from The Great Debate:

In U.S. elections, fear of Muslims

(Bernd Debusmann is a Reuters columnist. The opinions expressed are his own)

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - In the summer of 2006, a Gallup poll of more than 1,000 Americans found that one out of four favoured forcing Muslims in the United States, including U.S. citizens, to carry special identification. About a third said Muslims living in the U.S. sympathized with al Qaeda.

Almost a quarter said they wouldn't want a Muslim as a neighbour. Republicans, the poll said, saw Muslims in a more negative light than Democrats and independents, and were more opposed to having Muslim neighbours. Fewer than half those polled thought U.S. Muslims were loyal to the United States.

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