Sania says sorry for Mecca Masjid shoot | india | Hindustan Times
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Sania says sorry for Mecca Masjid shoot

Sania tenders "unequivocal" apology for hurting religious sentiments during shooting, reports Ashok Das.

india Updated: Dec 14, 2007 02:09 IST
Ashok Das

Tennis star Sania Mirza, who earned the ire of Islamic fundamentalists for shooting on the Mecca Masjid premises, tendered an "unequivocal" apology on Thursday.



In a letter to the Imam of the Mecca Masjid, she said: "It is with a deep sense of remorse that I apologise to all my brothers and sisters and respected elders who have been anguished by my unwittingly entering a portion of land belonging to Mecca Masjid while filming the Charminar with the intention of promoting the heritage monument which is symbolic of our city."



"While I am fully aware that a woman must not enter the sanctity of the mosque, I was unaware that even entering the outside gates was seriously objectionable, specially without permission, which I was assured by the agency they possessed."



Earlier in the day, the city police registered a case against her and an ad agency for shooting a film in Mecca Masjid, a 17th century mosque located next to the Charminar, on Monday.



Inspector Hussaini Alam said police booked a case against Sania and others under section 448 of Indian Penal Code for trespassing in the mosque.



The police action came in the wake of complaint registered on Tuesday by Khaja Nayeemuddin, who is in charge of the Mecca Masjid and superintendent of the minority welfare department.



In his complaint, Nayeemuddin said Sania and others had not taken permission from the department and it thus, amounted to trespass — a punishable offence.



The Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) party, an ally of the ruling Congress in the state, made a hue and cry over the episode, alleging Sania had hurt the religious sentiments of Muslims.