Sushant Singh Rajput committed suicide in his Bandra home on June 14. The 34-year old's untimely death has made fans question the presence of godfathers in the Bollywood film industry. Many fans have also criticised filmmakers and actors for promoting nepotism.
While many celebrities have chosen to distance themselves from the nepotism row, Manoj Bajpayee has defended the public anger. Bajpayee said, "If the anger is directed towards you, I have to ask the question, right?! When I say that people are right when they are making my film a hit, when the same people are asking me questions, it becomes very important for us to answer those questions. This is (something) what the government also does."
In his previous interview with Pinkvilla Manoj praised Sushant and said he could never achieve so much at such a young age. He said, "All of us have our highs and lows and emotions. Sushant was no different. I don’t think I am as talented as that. I don’t think I am as intelligent and as bright as he used to be. I don’t think I had achieved anything till the age of 34, what he achieved, as compared to his achievements. I feel that my achievements are very very small. That is how I remember him. I don’t remember him not only as a good human being."
The actor worked with Sushant Singh Rajput in the 2019 film Sonchiriya. Manoj said, "Let me start with this, the world is not fair. I have been saying this for 20 years that as an industry we celebrate mediocrity. Forget about the industry, as a nation we celebrate mediocrity. Something is lacking somewhere -- in our thought process, our value system. When we see talent, we immediately want to ignore or push it away. This is the value system of ours which is so deplorable."