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Last Updated: Thursday, 3 May 2007, 09:19 GMT 10:19 UK
Shetty attack on 'lunatic fringe'
Richard Gere and Shilpa Shetty
Photographs of the embrace made the front pages in India

Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty has blamed a "lunatic fringe" for creating uproar over on-stage kisses she received from Hollywood actor Richard Gere.

A warrant for Gere's arrest was issued last week for "obscene" behaviour after the televised embrace.

The star bent Shetty backwards on stage and kissed her repeatedly.

The incident triggered controversy in India, known for its conservative attitudes, despite Bollywood's sexually suggestive song-and-dance routines.

The incident occurred when Gere and Shetty were appearing at an Aids-awareness event in Delhi.

Gere apologised last month for causing offence over the incident.

Speaking in Australia, where she is promoting her latest film, Shetty said that the kisses episode had been "blown out of all proportion" and that Gere "was just being very sweet".

"The media tends to get slightly irresponsible at times but that's the price one has to pay for celebrity," she said.

Meanwhile the magistrate who issued an arrest warrant against Gere has been transferred.

Officials confirmed to the BBC that Judge Dinesh Gupta has been moved from his post in Jaipur to the town of Kishangarh several hours away.

They said that the transfer was "routine" and was for "administrative reasons".

The judge's arrest order drew harsh criticism in India, with senior lawyers arguing it had no legal merit.




SEE ALSO
Gere apologises over Shetty kiss
27 Apr 07 |  Entertainment
Gere faces Indian arrest warrant
27 Apr 07 |  Entertainment
Shetty defends Richard Gere kiss
17 Apr 07 |  Entertainment
Gere kiss sparks India protests
16 Apr 07 |  Entertainment
Muted response to Shetty in India
29 Jan 07 |  South Asia
Shetty wins Celebrity Big Brother
29 Jan 07 |  Entertainment

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