Filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt says he is not sure if he will go ahead with the staging of his play “Daddy” at the International Theatre Festival in Pakistan after an Indian production was denied visa to attend the event.
The 66-year-old filmmaker said that he has told the organisers of the festival that unless the other play gets a green signal, he will not take “Daddy”, which is based on his 1989 film of the same name, to Pakistan.
Bhatt was supposed to travel to Karachi along with his daughter Pooja Bhatt and the “Daddy” team for its staging at the closing ceremony of the theatre fest later this month.
“There is an uncertainty over the staging of ‘Daddy’ in Pakistan. One of our theatre group has not been given visa to travel to Karachi for the festival. When I asked the host they said some bureaucratic procedure has resulted into this problem,” Bhatt told PTI.
“My daughter and me are supposed to travel to Karachi for our play but if one of our own group form our country can’t go, then we will also opt out. It is either all of us or no one,” he added.
The team of “Kasumal Sapno” directed by Ajeet Singh Palawat returned from Amritsar yesterday after failing to obtain a NOC and visa from the Pakistan government.
The official Facebook page of NAPA Repertory Theatre Play, the organiser of the festival, posted, “’Kasumal Sapno’ has been postponed till a later date.”
Bhatt said that he along with his team were looking forward to visiting Karachi and attending the festival.
“It is the mother of all events for every performing artiste and theatre lover. Storytellers, filmmakers, artistes look forward to such events,” he said.
Bhatt hopes that the matter is resolved soon. “I have always said that performing art sticks nations together... cultural ties should not get affected by such issues. We have spent a decade to build ties and such an event is a body blow to us,” Bhatt said.