Security outside Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan's Juhu residence, Jalsa, was beefed up on Saturday, close on the heels of Maharashtra Congress chief Nana Patole's comments slamming Bachchan and actor Akshay Kumar for keeping mum on the issues like fuel price hike, claiming that party workers will show black flags to them and their films, when released, in protest.
The Mumbai Police, however, clarified that the additional security was prompted after the Republican Party of India (RPI) activists claimed that they would support the actors, protect them if the need arose, and would reportedly march towards Jalsa.
An official said that the security was beefed up for the RPI activists showing support and not due to the Congress leader's threats. Mumbai Police had learnt that the RPI party activists were to arrive at Jalsa to show their support for the actors on Saturday amid the controversy, security was tightened around and outside Jalsa. A police van was stationed along with two police officers and barriers. Amitabh's personal security guards were also commissioned along with increased security.
Amid the soaring petrol and fuel prices, Patole had launched an attack on Bachchan and Kumar, calling out their silence on the rising fuel prices in the country in the time of Modi government. Patole had said at a press conference, "Stars like Amitabh Bachchan and Akshay Kumar had tweeted when the price of petrol rose to Rs 70 per litre. But now the price is nearly Rs 100 per litre. Why are they quiet? Don't they have the courage to speak against the dictatorial Modi government?"
Patole on Saturday said that the Congress will protest against the actors' silence and black flags will be shown to them whenever they are spotted outside or when their movies release. Patole claimed that they will do the democratic way and said, "I didn't speak against Akshay Kumar and Amitabh Bachchan but against their work. They're not real heroes. If they were, they would've stood beside people during their sufferings. If they want to continue being 'kagaz ke sher', then we don't have any problem."
Patole further threatened to stop the screening and shooting of movies involving. Reacting to Patole's threats, Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment Ramdas Athawale had said that his party would stand with the actors and if Congress threatened to disturb their shoot, the RPI would give them protection.