Raj Thackeray-led Maharashtra Navnirman Sena on Saturday objected to the Centre bestowing the Padma Shri on singer-musician Adnan Sami, claiming he was not an “original Indian citizen”. Sami was one of the 118 people whose names were announced on Saturday for the Padma Shri awards, with the Ministry of Home Affairs list showing his home state as Maharashtra.
Sami was granted Indian citizenship with effect from January 1, 2016 after his Pakistani passport expired on May 26, 2015 and was not renewed there.
Sami, born in Lahore in Pakistan, first arrived in India on a one-year visitor’s visa on March 13, 2001. He was granted Indian citizenship after he requested the Centre to legalise his status on humanitarian grounds.