Actor Shah Rukh Khan met Maharashtra Navnirman Sena chief Raj Thackeray at his home on Sunday evening to discuss his film Raees, which is scheduled to release in January and stars Pakistani actor Mahira Khan.
Sources in the MNS told HT Khan called on Thackeray to assure him that contrary to the rumours on social media, his Pakistani co-star will not come to India to promote the film.
The move comes after the controversy over the movie, Ae Dil Hai Mushkil, which released in October. MNS had taken an aggressive stand against the movie, as it starred Pakistani actor Fawad Khan. “Khan promised he will not promote the movie with Mahira. Thackeray has promised to not create any problem for the release of the film,” said an MNS leader and associate of Thackeray.
Ameya Khopkar, MNS Chitrapat Karmachari Sena chief, said, “Khan has promised that he will not get Mahira Khan to promote Raees. There will be no interference from our end.”
The MNS hardened its opposition to Pakistani artistes in films after the Uri attack in September.
It was only after chief minister Devendra Fadnavis’ intervention and a meeting with all concerned, including Thackeray, that Karan Johar’s Ae Dil Hai Mushkil got released. It had led to another controversy with filmmakers committing Rs5 crore towards the Army Welfare Fund at the intervention meeting, which activists and civil society members termed extortion money.
Khan ran into trouble during the release of his movie, My Name is Khan. The movie was released under unprecedented security with the then Congress-NCP government going all out to ensure protection to the movie.