Bollywood stars accused of misusing Ajmer shrine

In charge of shrine says celebrity pilgrims appealing for movies that often feature immoral subjects insulting Islam.


Afp July 23, 2012

NEW DELHI: The head of one of the most important Muslim shrines in India has complained about Bollywood stars misusing the site to pray for their “sinful” films to be commercially successful.

Zainul Abedin Ali Khan, who leads the organisation in charge of the Ajmer shrine in Rajasthan, said that celebrity pilgrims were appealing for movies that often featured immoral subjects that insulted Islam.

“Many film stars come here with (a) CD or DVD of their work and offer it while praying for the success of the film or serial, whatever it is, which is absolutely against the Islamic law,” Khan told reporters in Ajmer on Sunday.

“They are using the holy place, a prime centre of religious belief, for purely commercial purposes and for degrading moral values among people,” the Press Trust of India news agency quoted him as saying.

The shrine to sufi saint Muin-ud-din Chishti, who died in Ajmer in the 13th century, is one of south Asia’s most important pilgrimage sites, attracting millions of Muslim and non-Muslim devotees from around the world every year.

Khan did not name any stars, but glamorous actresses Katrina Kaif and Kareena Kapoor, veteran leading man Amitabh Bachchan and heartthrob Shah Rukh Khan are among many Bollywood personalities to have visited in the past.

“Most of the films today are full of obscenity, double meaning words and expressions,” Khan explained. “It is hateful and sinful.

“I strongly condemn and object to the visit of film actors, actresses, directors and producers to the dargah (shrine) to seek blessings for such things which are taboo.”

Khan also complained that an unnamed male singer-composer visited the shrine wearing a burqa and that a leading actress offered prayers while dressed in a skirt.

“This is to attract attention and it is highly objectionable,” he said.

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COMMENTS (35)

Ali | 8 years ago | Reply

Why don't this matter is left on Saint if his spirit feels that one of the Bollywood star prayers are not worthy to be accepted, they will be rejected n if spirit feels it has substance than they will be accepted. There's no need to be soo emotional about a simple matter.

NASAH (USA) | 8 years ago | Reply

@Aslam: It is good to hear that "Indian Muslims are getting secular day by day" -- one wishes the Pakistani Muslims could do the same -- for the sake of peace and tranquility by reducing religious extremism.

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