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ASIA > Bollywood star faces police probe over cricket row

MUMBAI - Agence France-Presse

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Bollywood actor and Indian Premier League franchise Kolkata Knight Riders co-owner Shah Rukh Khan (R) gestures towards a security guard blowing a whistle to direct children accompanying him off the playing field after the IPL Twenty20 cricket match between Mumbai Indians and Kolkata Knight Riders at The Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai early morning on May 17, 2012. AFP photo

Bollywood actor and Indian Premier League franchise Kolkata Knight Riders co-owner Shah Rukh Khan (R) gestures towards a security guard blowing a whistle to direct children accompanying him off the playing field after the IPL Twenty20 cricket match between Mumbai Indians and Kolkata Knight Riders at The Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai early morning on May 17, 2012. AFP photo

Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan faced a police probe and a lifetime ban from Mumbai's main cricket stadium on Thursday following a furious late-night row with staff at the ground, officials said.
 
The actor, who co-owns the Indian Premier League (IPL) team Kolkata Knight Riders, took a group of youngsters including his daughter Suhana onto the pitch of the Wankhede Stadium after a match on Wednesday night.
 
A security guard tried to stop them from playing, leading the multi-millionaire actor to argue angrily for 10-15 minutes before finally giving up and leaving the stadium, an AFP photographer witnessed.
 
"Security officials told him to leave, but Shah Rukh Khan started the brawl," Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) secretary Nitin Dalal told NDTV news.
 
"He entered the ground half an hour after the game. The officers told him that this was not the right time. He misbehaved and he used foul language." Dalal said the MCA had filed a police complaint and would ban the cricket-crazy star from future attendance at the Wankhede Stadium.
 
"He'll not be allowed for any match -- Test match, one-day international or any T20 or IPL matches hereafter. That is what we have decided," said MCA treasurer Ravi Savant.
 
Savant said MCA president Vilasrao Deshmukh was among the officials and security personnel "abused" by Khan, adding that the stadium ban would be "for life".
 
The sweaty and dishevelled appearance of Khan, one of the most popular stars of the nation's prolific Bollywood film industry, was a far cry from the carefully managed image presented through his advertising and acting roles.
 
The 46-year-old was embroiled in another ugly row in January after a female director accused him of assaulting her husband at a late-night party.
 
Khan has also been summoned to appear before a court in Jaipur later this month after he was seen smoking at the city's main cricket stadium, in violation of anti-smoking laws.
 
Balbir Punj, a senior leader of India's political Bharatiya Janata Party, told NDTV that Khan was an icon and public figure who "should know how to behave in public".
 
He referred to an incident last month that saw Khan detained by US immigration authorities for questioning on arrival at a New York airport.
 
"When he was humiliated in America, the entire country stood by him. He should respect others and the law must take its course," Punj said.
 
Khan's agent was unavailable for comment on Thursday.

May/17/2012

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