The decision by Cinema Owners and Exhibitors Association of India (COEAI) to suspend the release of "Ae Dil Hai Mushkil" in single screen theatres in western India is the result of a "conspiracy", says controversial actor Kamaal R Khan, who was earlier targeted by Ajay Devgn for promoting the Karan Johar directorial.
Ajay had earlier this year alleged that Karan paid Kamaal Rs 25 lakh to tweet positively about "Ae Dil Hai Mushkil" and to give negative reviews to "Shivaay", which he has directed and acted in.
Kamaal spoke up in favour of "Ae Dil Hai Mushkil" on Friday after COEAI announced that "Ae Dil Hai Mushkil" won't release in single screen theatres in Maharashtra, Goa and Gujarat, due to the presence of Pakistani actor Fawad Khan in it.
Condemning the decision made by COEAI, Kamaal tweeted: "These cinema owners are cowards who are trying to harass film makers. It's a big conspiracy by some BJP darlings."
He added: "All officials of Cinema Owners and Exhibitors Association of India (COEAI) should be kicked on their a** if they will ever lift this ban again.
"Ban on films of Pakistani artists is only to stop release of 'Ae Dil Hai Mushkil' so that 'Shivaay' can get solo release and I think it's bad way to get solo release.
"If you trust your work and your film, then you don't need to stop release of someone's film to get solo release.
Instead you should compete at box office."
The COEAI has over 400 members.
The decision comes amid India-Pakistan tensions following a terror attack which killed 19 Indian soldiers. The Indian Army then carried out surgical attacks on terrorist launch pads across the LoC.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)