If Sania Mirza was not present as the chief guest of Madhya Pradesh government’s annual sports awards, blame it on her make-up kit worth Rs 75,000 and a chartered plane, neither of which was provided to her.
The award function originally slated for Saturday had to be rescheduled to Tuesday when the sports department dropped the idea of inviting her and settled for badminton coach Pullela Gopichand instead.
MP Sports Minister Yashodhara Raje told reporters that she respected the tennis player but found her demands unacceptable.
The demands were reportedly made by Sania’s personal assistant after the star accepted the invitation. The star or any of her aides are yet to react to the controversy.
If the sports department is to be believed, the demands made on Sania’s behalf included the make-up kit, a chartered plane to ferry her to Bhopal and back and five business class tickets for her assistants. It’s unclear how much money she demanded as fees.
“We pay for economy class air ticket, accommodation in a star hotel and local transport,’’ a sports department official said adding Gopichand agreed for this and so did Saina Nehwal who attended the function in the past.