Report: Muslim Cleric Issues Fatwa Against Bollywood Star for Wax Figure

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Bollywood star Salman Khan had a fatwa issued against him for allowing Madame Tussauds in London to make his image in wax, the Daily Mail reported.

Mufti Salim Ahmad Qasmi, a Muslim cleric in India, issued the fatwa, saying the statue is illegal according to the Sharia, which forbids depictions of all living creatures, Mohammed in particular. A mufti is a Muslim scholar who interprets the Sharia, or the religious law of Islam; a fatwa is a legal opinion or ruling handed down by an Islamic scholar.

Khan, star of more than 50 Bollywood movies, unveiled the statue himself last week and described it as an honor. (Bollywood is the informal term popularly used for the Mumbai-based Hindi-language film industry in India.) Major celebrities like Jennifer Lopez, Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie have also had their wax likenesses displayed at Madame Tussauds.

The Dioband Seminary which the mufti runs has already issued a fatwa against Khan for dancing at a Hindu festival last month.

The Indian actor says his "bad boy" image is to blame as fellow Muslim and even bigger star Shah Rukh Khan is also in the wax museum and hasn't been singled out.

Film critic Parsa Rao feels Khan doesn't have much to worry about, he told the Mail.

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"This is just nonsense that no one pays any attention to," he said. "These fatwas are becoming a joke."

Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, then Supreme Leader of Iran, issued a fatwa against author Salman Rushie over his 1988 novel "The Satanic Verses," which called for him to be killed.

As a result, he spent nearly a decade largely underground, appearing in public only sporadically. Earlier this month, a leading Indian Muslim group threatened to boycott a major conglomerate's products after its owners hosted Rushdie at their home in suburban Mumbai.