Pakistan Minister apologizes to actors

Lahore: A Pakistani Minister in Punjab province has apologized to two women actors after coming under widespread attack for publicly using indecent language against them, the media reported on Friday.

Information and Culture Minister Fayyazul Hassan Chohan, whose primary responsibility is to get good press for his government, himself attracted bad press with his remarks against film and stage actors at a public forum, the Dawn reported.

People from all walks of life chided the Minister for his below-the-belt remarks against film and theatre actors, the daily said.

Explaining his mind about the removal of “vulgar and indecent film signboards inside and outside cinema halls”, the Minister said pictures of “half-naked” women were displayed.

Saying he was trying to bring theatre under his jurisdiction, Chohan said: “I will ensure that Nargis becomes Haji Nargis and Megha fasts for 300 days a year instead of 30 days (in Ramadan).”

As his remarks went viral on social and electronic media, the Minister came under widespread criticism.

Nargis and Megha, famous stage actress of yesteryears, reacted angrily to the comments by Chohan.

Nargis told a TV channel that the Minister should have chosen decent words while speaking about a woman who had left showbiz and was leading a peaceful family life abroad.

Megha too said that the Minister should be ashamed of himself.

Punjab Senior Minister Aleem Khan had to extend an apology to the public: “Chohan is a new Minister, he will learn soon.”

Following the backlash, Chohan released video messages tendering an apology to Nargis and Megha.