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Rediff.com  » News » Imran under fire for Aamir charity blitz

Imran under fire for Aamir charity blitz

Source: PTI
December 23, 2004 19:58 IST
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Pakistan's cricketer-turned politician Imran Khan has come in for severe criticism from radical Islamic groups for inviting Bollywood star Aamir Khan to the country earlier this month for raising funds for his cancer hospital.

Imran, who addressed a seminar on Kashmir at Punjab University in Lahore on Wednesday, came under attack from members of some Islamic groups for inviting Aamir, local Daily Times newspaper reported on Thursday.

They accused Imran of challenging "Pakistaniat" and "national honour" by inviting a celebrity from India and demanded support for their "Kashmir cause" and not opening of arms for the neighbouring country, it said.

Imran, who also had hundreds of his fans present there to hear him, retorted saying that no Pakistani actor would have been able to raise a donation worth Rs 6.5 crore as did Aamir.

He said his new project to build a second cancer hospital in Karachi required $50 mn and there was no harm in inviting such stars if they raised money for a noble cause.

Imran cited his own example of going to England for similar charity programmes.

During his visit to Pakistan, Aamir took part in several fund raising dinners and a three-hour marathon live telethon on a local TV. He also sold the bat used by him in the blockbuster film Lagaan for Rs 60 lakh.

Imran, a strong critic of President Pervez Musharraf, heads Tehreek-e-Insaf party. He built a cancer hospital in Lahore several years ago in the memory of his mother.

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