#LataMangeshkar funeral: BJP leaders draw criticism over SRK 'spit' row
Bharat Ratna winner Lata Mangeshkar breathed her last on Sunday. Her last rites were held in Mumbai with several notable figures in attendance. Actor Shah Rukh Khan was also present and was seen reading a dua. But his act of paying respects was "attacked" by some Bharatiya Janata Party leaders, which soon earned them and the entire party widespread flak. Here's what went down.
Khan offered 'dua' for late singer at funeral
Let us begin with what happened. At Mangeshkar's state-sponsored funeral on February 6, SRK was seen offering a dua for the late singer, while his manager, Pooja Dadlani, prayed with her hands closed beside him. This image went viral with netizens calling it a "statement" or "equality" in the sense that the beliefs of two religions can exist simultaneously here.
Then, 'spit' came into picture, swiftly raising storms
After joining his hands in dua, SRK was seen removing his mask to blow air as is customary in his religion. However, this act was questioned by several BJP leaders. The party's state-in-charge for Haryana, Arun Yadav, shared the footage, asking if Khan was spitting. Similar claims and misinformed guesses came from BJP Uttar Pradesh's Spokesperson, Prashant Umrao, and BJP Delhi's Vice-President Rajan Tewari.
Here is full video of what happened
Fans, netizens, other political parties quickly defended Khan
Several Twitter users, as well as fans, bashed the verified handles affiliated with the ruling party for attacking a genuine act by the actor. "The amount of hatred BJP criminals inculcate in their heart(s) is unimaginable," wrote one user. Notably, at the time of writing, over 89.6K tweets were made under the hashtag #ShahRukhKhan, therefore heavily trending on the micro-blogging platform.
Maharashtra government announced public holiday today as mark of respect
Apart from Khan, cricketer Sachin Tendulkar and his wife Anjali attended the funeral held at Shivaji Park on Sunday. PM Narendra Modi, Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray, alongside notable union and state ministers were also present. Earlier, the Centre had announced two-day national mourning along with the National Flag flying at half-mast for two days. Further, the Maharashtra government declared a public holiday on Monday.