According to a news item in the Indian Express (December 3, 2015), Madhya Pradesh Sports Minister Yashodhra Raje Scindia wanted to invite tennis star Sania Mirza as chief guest for the annual sports award function. The Minister had been in touch with Sania Mirza for past few months. The function was originally scheduled to be held on August 29 but was postponed by three months to November 28, the date given by Sania Mirza. According to the Minister, “Everything was set as I was given the date of November 28 by her. I had even directed department officials to make necessary arrangements to organise the event.”
However, the Minister had to drop the idea of having Sania Mirza for the event because of her unreasonable demands: a chartered jet plane with five business class tickets and Rs. 75,000 worth make-up kit. Justifying the demands, Sania Mirza’s manager told the minister that ‘Sania is a big star’.
As Yashodhra Raje Scindia has rightly said, “She has undoubtedly made India proud but her demands were unacceptable. We are accountable to public money. We cannot spend money on anyone’s personal make-up kit.”
The Minister invited senior badminton coach Pullela Gopichand jo attend the function which was ultimately held on December 1.
Yashodhra Raje Scindia deserves full appreciation for her decision. Sania Mirza cannot be pampered at taxpayers’ cost.
Sania Mirza’s fans may say that she had given concession to the Madhya Pradesh government because she had not demanded special dress for the occasion; a celebrity like Sania Mirza has to come in a special dress on a special occasion and it is the duty of the host to bear the cost.
Incidentally, we have learnt that every time Sania Mirza appears in public, whether to play tennis or to grace any occasion, it costs Rs. 75000/- just on her make-up. Can anyone guess daily expenditure on her make up? Many film actors must be feeling jealous of her.
The ‘secularists’ may cite it as yet another example of ‘growing intolerance’; the BJP government did not accept the demands because Sania Mirza because is a Muslim.
December 03, 2015