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Updated: March 28, 2010 19:11 IST

Abhishek sidelined at Earth Hour event?

PTI
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Delhi Chief Mnister Sheila Dikshit and actor Abhishek Bachchan at a promotional event for the Earth Hour, in New Delhi on March 9, 2010. The abrupt removal of Bachchan's video message from an Earth Hour event on Saturday has triggered a row.
The Hindu Delhi Chief Mnister Sheila Dikshit and actor Abhishek Bachchan at a promotional event for the Earth Hour, in New Delhi on March 9, 2010. The abrupt removal of Bachchan's video message from an Earth Hour event on Saturday has triggered a row.

Even as the row over Amitabh Bachchan’s presence at a Mumbai function refuses to die down, the megastar has claimed that his son Abhishek’s posters were “apparently” removed from the venue of WWF’s Earth Hour event in Delhi attended by Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit.

The 34-year-old junior Abhishek Bachchan also tweeted that a video message featuring him was not shown at the event.

“A few hours before the show was to start apparently the audio visual featuring Abhishek had been asked to be removed and banner posters bearing his photograph as Ambassador had been stopped from being displayed,” Amitabh Bachchan wrote on his blog.

“Abhishek who has been working so hard on the cause is obviously disappointed, especially since he had worked late into the night where he was shooting out of town to accommodate this creative,” he said.

“And I wonder. Am I hallucinating, or is there a pattern in all this?” the senior Bachchan asked.

Abhishek Bachchan was appointed brand ambassador of Earth Hour by WWF-India and also addressed press meets in this regard earlier this month. WWF had put up posters with his photographs in the capital as part of its campaign to promote the initiative under which lights were switched off in various cities of the country from 8.30 pm to 9.30 pm on Saturday.

However, no posters of Abhishek Bachchan were seen at Saturday night’s function. Repeated attempts to contact WWF officials did not yield any results.

The controversy broke out days after a row over Amitabh Bachchan attending a government function in Mumbai where Maharashtra Chief Minister Ashok Chavan was also present. A section of Congress took objection to his presence as he is the brand ambassador for BJP-ruled Gujarat.

Ms. Dikshit steered clear of the controversy saying, “I have nothing to do with it. I went there at the invitation of WWF. I switched off the lights. I don’t know anything.”

Asked whether she had any reservation in having Abhishek Bachchan’s posters at the event, Ms. Dikshit shot back saying, “I am not WWF and you go and ask them.”

“An audio visual has been prepared with Abhishek where he is seeking a pledge towards preservation of the Earth and requesting people to switch off their lights for an hour. The Chief Minister of Delhi, Mrs. Shiela Dixit, and a prominent member of the ruling Congress Party, is attending the moment,” Amitabh Bachchan noted in his blog entry.

Abhishek Bachchan, who is away in Goa for the shoot of his film tweeted, “I had sent a video msg (message) for all at the event, thanking them for their participation and support, but for some reason that couldn’t be shown.”

Abhishek Bachchan further tweeted, “I believe the function at the India Gate was also very nice and well attended. Kudos to the team at WWF for pulling all this off. I’m tld (told) that the earth hour was a huge success. Well done guys. You’ll have done a wonderful job in spreading the news.”

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