Totally dismissing rumours of Mahira Khan’s ouster from Raees, the film’s co-producer Farhan Akhtar says they’ve no plans of replacing her. Reliable sources say the Raees team seriously contemplated changing its leading lady.
“What can I say? We’ve completed her shooting. The film is ready for release. If we had shot the film after the recent developments (the deterioration in Indo-Pak relations) we would have certainly not worked with any artiste from Pakistan,” says Farhan, reiterating his belief that Karan Johar’s film was rightly released on time in spite of the Pakistani presence in the cast.
“It (the attempts to stop Johar’s film) should not have happened in the first place. Karan started the film a year ago. Is he supposed to pay a retrospective penalty?” asks Farhan.
Discounting all possibilities of offering the army Rs. 5 crore as “penalty” for the Pakistani presence, as suggested by the MNS, Farhan says, “How we choose to show our solidarity with our brave jawaans is up to us. I don’t think anyone outside the Indian government is authorized to brief us on how to deal with our conscience.”