Appearing on a live show on television news channel Aaj Tak, lyricist and writer Javed Akhtar scolded anchor Chitra Tripathi for framing her questions with what he perceived as bias. A video of their exchange has gone viral on social media.

“Why are the Indian Muslims scared? Who are the people who are trying to gain politically from the situation [CAA-NRC protests]?” Tripathi asked. Akhtar accused her of being biased in her questions. “You are a news anchor, you should stay neutral. You have picked a side, but journalists should not do that,” he said.

Earlier, another video of Akhtar delivering a speech on the Citizenship Act and the NRC was also widely circulated on social media.

Speaking at the 30th Safdar Hashmi Shahadat Diwas on January 1 in Jhandapur, Ghaziabad, Akhtar drew an analogy between governments and seasons, saying that they both change with time.


“Injustice, violence, and corruption, however, stay with all seasons, only their degrees change,” Akhtar said during his speech, invoking applause from the gathering. In a cryptic tone, he added, “The winter is getting worse these days, unlike anything we have seen in many years.”

Akhtar added that the poor would have to bear the burden of providing documentary proof of citizenship. “Crores of Indians don’t know their birthdays,” he said. “How will they furnish documents? This is going to be a problem for the poor. No one can throw my kids out of the country, I have money.”