The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Star parade outside Lilavati
- Bollywood turns out in strength to look up Salman mother and John

Mumbai, April 11: Mumbai’s Lilavati Hospital ' rapidly emerging as the favourite with Bollywood after Amitabh Bachchan’s long hospitalisation in November ' began to buzz again last night, with John Abraham and Salman Khan’s mother Salma admitted on the top floor.

Television vans ringed the 11-storey Bandra hospital for live broadcasts, and fans crowded around the gates for a glimpse of their favourite stars who had lined up to meet the Dhoom star and Salma.

Abraham was admitted to the hospital on Sunday after a bike accident, while Salma was wheeled in last evening after she suffered a shock on hearing her 41-year-old star son had been given five years in jail for poaching chinkaras.

A bevy of celebrities lined up at Lilavati today. Among them were Suniel Shetty, Shilpa Shetty, Amisha Patel, Katrina Kaif, Karisma Kapoor and designer Vikram Fadnis. Salman’s younger brother Sohail, sister Arpita and father Salim Khan were with Salma when she was admitted.

“She was at the farm when she heard about Salman, and she believed he would be jailed for five years. She vomited and collapsed in the bathroom. It’s related to stress,” Salim told reporters. Hospital sources said her condition was stable.

Salman is believed to be very close to his parents, and had named them as the people he admires the most in an interview on his official website.

Abraham, who suffered a leg injury when his bike crashed into two cyclists, had a clot in his left knee and soft tissue damage in the left foot.

“John is better now. It is not a fracture, but doctors have advised him good rest in view of the world tour later this month,” Abraham’s publicist Rajendra Rao said.

In a statement issued from his hospital bed, Abraham clarified that he was neither drunk nor speeding when the accident took place, as some reports had said.

Two men riding double-seat on a bicycle were coming on the wrong side of the road in his direction, and in an attempt to avoid hitting them, he swerved and crashed, he said.

“I told the two men they should not be so careless, hailed a rickshaw and the three of us went to Bhabha hospital. I told the doctor to treat them first. The doctor said they were fine, and just had minor abrasions. He then attended to me. Since the pain was unbearable, I later got admitted to Lilavati hospital,” the Taxi No 9211 star said.

Abraham may face arrest, but Mumbai police preferred to keep silent. “We will not comment until investigations are over,” deputy commissioner Amitabh Gupta said.

With Abraham hospitalised and Salman jailed, there is a huge question mark on Rockstars 2006, a multi-starrer Bollywood extravaganza scheduled to go on a global promotion starting April 21.

Among the visitors at Lilavati were Morani brothers Aly, Karim and Mohammed, who had planned Rockstars 2006. Primarily a Salman show, the Moranis had also roped in Abraham, Zayed Khan, Kareena Kapoor, Shahid Kapur, Mallika Sherawat, and Esha Deol for a tour which would begin in Calgary, Canada, and travel to the US, UK, Europe, and the UAE.

With the possibility of Abraham and Salman not being available, the organisers are in a tizzy. Mohammed Morani said: “It is better if you call us on Wednesday afternoon (after Salman’s bail hearing). John Abraham is likely to be discharged today. So, let’s wait and see.”

Saawan full house

Salman’s latest release Saawan opened to full houses in city theatres on Friday. Industry sources said Salman’s real-life controversies had never impacted the box-office.

After his arrest in poaching cases in Jodhpur in 1998, Khan had hits like Pyaar Kiya Toh Darna Kya, Kuch Kuch Hota Hain and Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam in 1998-99.

In 2001, despite Chori Chori Chupke Chupke being embroiled in a row over underworld funding, it became a runaway hit. In 2005, the controversy over the purported Salman-Aishwarya tapes did not affect No Entry and Maine Pyar Kyun Kiya.

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