Criticism of IPL should be taken note of: SRK

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Mumbai, Mar 13 (UNI) Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan, owner of the Kolkata Knightriders, today welcomed criticism of the Indian Premier League (IPL) and said negative views would help remove lacunae in the new process.

Responding to Shiv Sena Chief Bal thackeray's critical comments about the manner in which players were auctioned by the IPL, he said that opinion about the IPL from all quarters need to be encouraged. He said he was even willing to meet the Sena Supremo and explain the details to him.

Shah Rukh Khan was addressing mediapersons, along with his team captain Saurav Ganguly and players, Ishant Sharma, Murali Kartik, Cheteshwar Pujara and Akash Chopra.

Responding to questions, the actor said cricketers deserve the name, fame and money they earn. ''As owner of a IPL team, I have nothing to add to it. Infact, I can learn organisational and tactical skills from them,'' he said.

He said there was nothing wrong with Indian players sharing space with International stars in the dressing room.

''Regionalism and religion has no space on a sports field. A platform like IPL will instill values to believe and respect diverse cultures among the youth. Hence, we have dedicated the Kolkata team to the youth of the country. The IPL is a statement on how united we are,'' he said.

He said that joining IPL was a big step for his company - Red Chillies Entertainment, both economically and emotionally. He said the cricketing side of Knightriders will be looked after by coach John Buchanan, physio Andrew Lepius and captain Saurav Ganguly, while the administration side will be looked after by his partner Jai Mehta (Juhi Chawla's husband). ''I am for providing the entertainment factor,'' he said.

He also showed the music video and the team's theme song to the mediapersons. The video featuring Khan himself has been directed by Ganesh Hegde and the music has been scored by Vishal-Shekhar.


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