Javed Akhtar, who was in Lahore in Pakistan to participate in a festival in memory of poet Faiz Ahmed Faiz, said at the festival that the perpetrators of the 26/11 Bombay terror attacks were still roaming freely in Pakistan.
He added that Pakistanis should, therefore, not feel offended when India talks about the 2008 carnage. The lyricist and poet made the comments in response to an audience member who told him to take with him a message of peace and tell Indians that Pakistan is “a positive, friendly and loving country”. Javed added, “We should not blame each other… The atmosphere is tense, that should be doused.”
The celebrated lyricist-poet lamented the fact that though Pakistani artistes had been welcomed in India, Pakistan had never held a single show of late Lata Mangeshkar. The video of Javed’s comments has gone viral.
Javed Akhtar left Pakistan on February 21 after attending the three-day festival which attracted a large audience from different walks of life at Lahore’s Alhamra Arts Council. At the festival, he spoke at length about language, poetry performing arts, love and friendship.