Senior Editor
05.15.09 16 Comments

You’ve probably seen this by now since it’s all over every news outlet, but Azharuddin Ismail, the kid who played young Jamal in Slumdog Millionaire, recently had his shanty torn down.  According to some reports, the same thing actually happened a few months ago, so it’s not actually that big of news, but you know these media hippies. They love a good third-world sob story.  Waaah, my one-room shack got torn down.  Waaaah, I live in the sewer.  That attitude’s the reason you’re not making the big bucks like me.

Ismail’s tarpaulin-covered home in a teeming slum was one of several shanties, illegally built along a drain, that were demolished by local authorities in Mumbai, India’s financial capital and entertainment hub. “When they came I was sleeping, they shook me awake and one policeman even threatened me,” Ismail, surrounded by half-broken suitcases filled with clothes and utensils, told Reuters. “What can I do if they have demolished my house? I will sleep out in the open.”

A poster of “Slumdog Millionaire,” signed by director Danny Boyle, fluttered from the only wall of Ismail’s shanty still standing. Open sewers run nearby and it had no running water.  [mmm, that’s some good poverty porn.  You guys might wanna leave me alone for a few minutes. *fap fap fap* -Ed.]

“The shanties are all touching a drain that has to be cleaned before the advent of the monsoons,” said U.D. Mistry, the local official in charge of the demolition drive.

Just a few months ago, the filmmakers and the Indian government were literally fighting over who’d get to buy this kid a house and paying rickshaws to take him to school (I’m not making this up).  And now this.  Why, it’s almost as if Hollywood people and government of India were just full of empty promises.  Danny Boyle isn’t going to hear the end of this until he adopts the kid.  Oooh, I smell reality show!  Wait, false alarm, it’s just the sewer.

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