Actor Aamir Khan is promoting a cause… He has joined hands with non-profiit organization, the Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR) to urge the youth and the public at large, not just to vote, but to make conscious, informed decisions at polling booths. The actor stressed that he wasn’t propagating any political party or leader, but had simply come forward to say “Please Vote! And make the vote count!”
How many times have you voted for in the past?
Aamir: I wasn’t particular about it. I must’ve voted about 3-4 times; I live at Pali Hill and every time elections came up, I simply went to the polling booth gave my vote to Sunil Dutt saab and came home. Today I realise that what I did wasn’t right. I wasn’t aware of how many people were in the constituency, I didn’t know who they were, what they stood for, or what they did, and I didn’t bother to find out. But from now on it’s going to be different. The ADR plans to put together a thorough list of candidates standing for elections – you’d know of their qualifications, if there are any cases against them, and the assets owned by them. Then you can make informed decisions and vote for the person you think will be most suitable.
What’s the one thing you want to see change in this country?
Aamir: It has to be education. Education shouldn’t be denied to anyone. And by education, I don’t mean learning a poem by heart…
What provoked you to take on this particular cause?
Aamir: If we are thinking of a better India, we have to think “good leaders”. Citizens have to be aware of their rights. The 26/11 terror attack has made people ask questions… They’ve stood up unanimously and said ‘enough is enough!’ Everyone wants to do something. In five years, you’re getting your first chance to do something, so go there and do it – vote!
But you aren’t going to be in India during election time?
Aamir: I’m going to the US for a vacation with my children. But I’m returning to India for a day just to vote. I’ll vote and go back to spend time with my kids. That’s the importance I’m going to be giving to the ‘dot’. My association with the ADR and the things I learnt along the way has sensitized me a great deal.
On what basis are you going to cast your vote – a candidate’s image, his promises or his ideologies?
Aamir: I’d cast my vote on the basis of his/her character and integrity.
Your views on the SC barring Sanjay Dutt from contesting…?
Aamir: I really don’t wish to make any comments on this. I just wish to tell the people three things – 1. Please vote; 2. Please make an informed choice; 3. Please don’t allow anyone to buy your vote.
Your views on actors getting into politics…?
Aamir: It’s a democratic country. People can do as they please.
Do you have any political inclinations?
Aamir: None, whatsoever. Films are my first love, and cinema is something I am passionate about. I’ll stick to just doing that.