Pakistani actress Mahira Khan has apologised for posing with a guy, dressed up as a Shiv Sena worker at a Halloween party, after inviting backlash from Indian fans
Pakistani actress Mahira Khan, who is starring opposite Shah Rukh Khan in 'Raees' was the target of much ire from her Indian fans after a Halloween image surfaced online showing her and a Pakistani director, who was dressed as a representative of a 'Shiv Sainik' and holding a placard that read "Mahira ko bahaar nikaalo".
The image refers to the Shiv Sena's threat that they will not let any Pakistani artist enter Maharashtra.
She has since apologised for hurting sentiments, but says the image has been misconstrued.
Picture courtesy: Twitter account: Mahira-Khan.Net @TheMahiraKhanFC
The actress is making her Bollywood debut with Shah Rukh Khan-starrer “Raees”. And her Halloween photograph, which surfaced online, has been taken as a dig at the Shiv Sena which last month vowed not to let Mahira and another Pakistani actor, Fawad Khan, promote their upcoming films in Maharashtra.
Mahira took to Twitter on Thursday to issue an apology for hurting people's sentiments.
"The image from a Halloween event I attended has been made out to be something it never was. It was not done intentionally to hurt anybody's sentiments, neither to make a political statement," she posted.
The controversy comes at a sensitive time. In the last few weeks, Shiv Sena has hit national headlines with its protest against Pakistani ghazal singer Ghulam Ali's concerts in Pune and Mumbai (which were consequently cancelled), ink attack on former BJP ideologue Sudheendra Kulkarni and opposition to release of former Pakistan foreign minister Khurshid Kasuri's book, as well as protest at BCCI office over the planned visit by Pakistan Cricket Board chief.
Mahira believes artistes are creative people and should be kept away from politics.
Mahira Khan at the Halloween party. Picture courtesy: Twitter
"As many have said before me, artistes are creative people who can't be dragged into the politics of nations. I have always made a concerted effort to maintain this standard for myself. Love and peace to all.
"If I have hurt anyone's sentiments with the image at the Halloween, I would like to apologise as that was not what I intended and was unintentional," she added.
According to reports, Mahira attended a Halloween party in Lahore where she was accompanied by film director Asim Raza. She came dressed as catwoman while Raza was dressed as a political leader.