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Bollywood movie irks Olympic champ

Last updated on: August 30, 2005 22:42 IST

Olympic champion Ahmed Al Maktoum has objected and asked for immediate removal of any reference to him as a hired assassin in the Hindi movie Sarkar.

The United Arab Emirates shooter conveyed his feeling of insult caused by the movie through a renowned shooter from India who had been to Dubai recently to train with him.

"He [Al Maktoum] feels that this reference should immediately be removed so that it does not insult him and any other achievers who have excelled in the Olympics for their country," said Moraad Ali Khan, who won the double-trap team gold at the Manchester Commonwealth Games in 2002.

Moraad was in Dubai to train for the upcoming Asian clay shooting championships in Thailand with world number one Maktoum, who pipped Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award winner Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore to win the double trap gold at Athens Games last year.

In Sarkar, there is a character who is referred to an Olympic gold medallist shooter from Dubai, hired for contract killing.

Al Maktoum felt the reference in the movie was a "direct insult" to him, according to Moraad.

"Sheikh Ahmed was very direct on this issue. Although his name has not been mentioned in the movie, he took it as a direct insult as there is no other gold medallist in shooting in Dubai and the whole of UAE," Moraad said.

"Many of his Indian friends at Dubai and media persons are very disappointed with what the reference in the movie tried to bring out," Moraad said.

"He is a sportsman and does not appreciate being mentioned as a killer. He does not understand what was the point in mentioning an Olympic gold medallist as the killer.

"While I was training there, hearing such remarks and references from all the friends in shooting circles in Dubai and other local Arabs, it was very disappointing and I did not have an answer as to why this happened," Moraad said.

Sarkar is directed by Ram Gopal Varma.

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