Silly to question Anand`s nationality: Shah Rukh
Mumbai: Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan feels it is "silly if not tragic" to question Chess icon Vishwanath Anand`s nationality.
Anand was to have been conferred an honorary doctorate along with Prof David Mumford of Harvard University at a function in Hyderabad on Monday night coinciding with the current International Congress of Mathematicians.
But bureaucratic hurdles caused by the Union Human Resource Development Ministry delayed the plans of University of Hyderabad to confer the honour on the 39-year-old champion, who lives in Spain for the last few years but holds an Indian passport.
"It would be silly if it wasn`t so tragic asking Vishy Anand for indianness. CWG, Cricket & Vishy, India is truly having some sad sports days(sic)," Shah Rukh wrote in a post on Twitter.
"Instead of just cheering or jeering at half filled unkept arenas...we all should respect the great gift of sporting talent in our country (sic)," the 44-year-old star wrote on the micro-blogging website.
The HRD Minister Kapil Sibal called up Anand yesterday over telephone in Hyderabad and apologised. The minister later said there was no question of his ministry raising queries over Anand`s citizenship and that he has persuaded the sportsman to accept the doctorate.
But the chess wizard politely turned down the honour for the present saying he would accept it on a later date because of his prior commitments.