Warrants against Shilpa, Gere over kiss
Observing that their public kiss was “highly sexually erotic”, a city court on Thursday issued an arrest warrant against Hollywood actor Richard Gere and summoned actress Shilpa Shetty for appearance on May 5.
Dinesh Gupta, Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate, Jaipur City, issued the order on a PIL filed by Poonam Chand Bhandari, an advocate-resident here, who complained that their public kiss during an anti-AIDS awareness programme in Delhi was an “indecent representation” of sexual activities in a public place.
He demanded action against them under the provisions of the Indian Penal Code.
The CJM, who viewed the video footage of the programme, observed that the attitude of the two film personalities was “highly sexually erotic” which had “transgressed all limits of vulgarity and have the tendency to corrupt the society”.
He said Shetty`s attitude was “cooperative” and she never restrained herself but kept inviting Gere for the kissing episode which stretched on for a good while.
The court felt that Shetty was equally involved in an action that was impermissible under the Indian laws and which “denigrated” Indian culture, tradition and social values.
“Therefore, she is an accused under Section 294 of the Indian Penal Code,” it observed. It directed the SP (headquarters), Jaipur, that since Gere was a foreigner and could leave India he should be arrested at the earliest and a warrant served on him.
A Metropolitan Magistrate in Mumbai was requested to serve the summons on Shetty.
Gere has already left India.
No summons from Jaipur court: Shilpa’s spokesperson
“Shilpa has not received any summons or order to appear before the court. She is on a yearly visit to various temples around India and will be coming back to Mumbai only after a week,” her spokesperson Dale Dhagwagar told reporters on Thursday.
Asked if Shilpa would go to Jaipur if she gets the summons, he said, “The summons has not come so far and once it comes, we will take appropriate steps.”
Dhagwagar added, “As far as the case goes, it is quite odd to hear that it has been filed for such things. More attention should have been paid to the bigger issue of AIDS awareness rather than making a hue and cry about Richard Gere`s peck on Shilpa`s cheek.”
Asked how Shilpa had reacted, Dale said Gere`s “cute peck” happened on the spur of the moment and she did not hold Gere responsible for the act.
“It was not a planned act but an imprompto one,” he said.