Shah Rukh Khan who is to attend the opening ceremony for the Men’s Hockey World Cup in Odisha, was under threat from the fringe group Kalinga Sena who said they would throw ink on the actor.
It has now been reported on Hindustan Times that this threat of attack has been withdrawn, following a plea from the Hockey India president Mohammed Mushtaque Ahmad, who wrote in his letter, “Shah Rukh Khan is one of the most popular actors of India and is widely known in the hockey community for his support for hockey and movie Chak de India and because of this he has been invited to attend the opening ceremony. Throwing ink on someone who has been invited as a guest shall bring a bad name to India and will show Odisha in a very poor light in front of all international guests, including the teams.”
Kalinga Sena chief Hemant Rath said, “We have decided to withdraw our pledge following the request by Hockey India President. Since it is an international event and Shah Rukh Khan is a promoter, we don’t want to protest, as that would give a bad name to Odisha.”
The animosity stems back to 17 years ago for Khan’s film ‘Asoka’ (2001). The people of Odisha felt the film had insulted their sentiments and distorted history. Kalinga Sena had demanded an apology from Khan as ‘Asoka’ (2001) had allegedly not only portrayed the Kalinga War incorrectly, but dishonoured the state, culture and people of Odisha.
Khan will attend along with Madhuri Dixit Nene and A.R Rahman, who will perform during the inaugural ceremony of the Men’s Hockey World Cup at Kalinga Stadium on Tuesday.