NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Bollywood actor and Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) owner Shah Rukh Khan was banned on Friday from entering Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium for the next five years but the decision may not be cast in stone yet.
Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) president Vilasrao Deshmukh said Khan’s unapologetic behaviour after an altercation with MCA officials at the stadium on Wednesday had left the association with no other option but to ban him.
“He has no regrets about his action or behaviour. In fact he justified the action of manhandling the security guards and threatening MCA officials,” Deshmukh, the father of Bollywood actor Riteish, told reporters.
“The managing committee is forced to ban Mr Shah Rukh Khan from entering Wankhede Stadium for a period of five years,” he added.
On Wednesday, Khan was prevented from entering the cricket ground after the Kolkata Knight Riders beat the Mumbai Indians in an Indian Premier League (IPL) match. Khan has said he was provoked by the MCA officials and security guards who, the actor alleged, misbehaved with children including his daughter.
IPL Chairman Rajeev Shukla was not sure if the MCA could ban Khan.
“I think MCA can only recommend (the ban),” Shukla, who is also the vice-president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), told reporters. “The decision has to be taken by the BCCI.”
MCA vice-president Ratnakar Shetty had no doubts that the situation could have worsened on Wednesday but for the sensible behaviour of the Wankhede officials.
“In spite of being abused in the foulest language, I think people showed great restraint. Otherwise it would have ended up being an ugly incident at the site,” Shetty, also the BCCI’s chief administrative officer, said.
Khan seemed to have the support of fellow IPL franchise owner Vijay Mallya.
“All I know is that my good friend Shah Rukh Khan is very passionate about his team, very passionate about children,” the owner of the Bangalore IPL team told reporters.
“What happened needs to be investigated. That is something strictly between the MCA and the affected person,” Mallya added. (Editing by Sudipto Ganguly and Tony Tharakan)