KOLKATA: Bollywood megastar Shah Rukh Khan seems to have lost faith with West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee despite the actor being a brand ambassador of the state government.
The state government has issued a new directive stating that the actor’s image need not be used while propagating Mamata Government’s “achievements”.
Soon after the TMC Government came to power ending the 34-year rule of the CPM-led Left Front, Mamata had appointed SRK as brand ambassador of West Bengal taking a cue from Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, who had appointed Amitabh Bacchan as the brand ambassador of the state.
Critics say that Mamata had an eye on the 30 per cent minority votes in the state, which always stood by the Left Front. Though there was not a single player from the state in Kolkata Knight Riders team when it won the IPL 7 championship, Mamata organised a celebration at the Eden Gardens here spending crores of rupees. The team’s co-owner SRK was also present on the occasion.
During the IPL opening ceremony at the Yuba Bharati Krirangan stadium here, Didi was seen dancing with the Bollywood badshah. However, Didi seems to have realised that SRK is no more a saleable product in the state where the megastar does not have a large fan following in the rural areas.
Though SRK had acted in the documentary films of the Didi Government, it failed to evoke a good response. So, now for the much-touted ‘kanyashree’ programme for girl child, the state government wants to rope in a celebrity from a popular Bengali television serial. It also wants to rope in a popular footballer for its short film on youth programme.
It is learned that Mamata had directed the new committee to issue an e-tender and employ a professional agency to make the new documentary films.
The state is going to lose the huge amount of money spent on films with SRK as they evoke little response unlike Gujarat’s Bachchan advertisements, which attracted people from across the world.
In the new committee, Mamata has included only those artistes close to the TMC, including actor Rudranil Ghosh, who is facing a rape charge in a court here. Keeping in mind the Assembly elections in 2016, she directed that more folk singers be used in these films.