Nearly half of Mumbai’s cinemas have stopped advance bookings for Shah Rukh Khan’s My Name is Khan, scheduled for release on Friday.
After a conference call on Wednesday afternoon, theatre-owners said the security provided to them by the Mumbai police is not adequate. The Shiv Sena has threatened to attack cinemas showing the film unless Shah Rukh apologizes for his comments on Pakistani cricketers.
The film’s director, Karan Johar, tweeted "On my way to the airport..nerves are high, morale is higher and the city support is the highest..more power to the mighty mumbaikar…"
A thousand Shiv Sainiks have been taken into custody by the Mumbai police after Sena leader Manohar Joshi said on Wednesday that neither the police nor the government will be able to stop his men.
The leave of all Mumbai police has been cancelled so that 63 theatres scheduled to show Khan’s film can be protected. On Tuesday, Johar met the Mumbai police commissioner D Sivanandan. Multiplex owners attended the meeting too.
Shah Rukh Khan’s security has also been increased by the Mumbai police.
The constables assigned to cinema halls have been told that no bags can be taken into theatres. Every ticket-holder will be frisked while entering the cinema, and will have to provide identity cards. Single-screen cinemas will be manned by a police sub-inspector, one constable, two women police constables and 5 plainclothes policemen. Theatres with more screens will have even more security.
Shah Rukh Khan last week refused to apologize for saying that Pakistani cricketers should be allowed to participate in the next season of the Indian Premier League (IPL3). "What should I retract…that I’m an Indian?" he asked. Khan later told NDTV in an exclusive interview that he has not asked for a meeting with either Bal or Uddhav Thackeray to discuss their sentiments about his statement, or his film.(NDTV)