Pakistan President Pervez Musharaff claimed today that the Indian bollywood actress Mallika Sherawat who created sensation at the Cannes International Film Festival is an integral part of Pakistan and that she should be handed over by the Indian government to Pakistan. He also cited unconfirmed scientific reports which suggest that Mallika's fourth generation ancestors may have belonged to the region of Peshawar, now in Pakistan. He even proposed that Pakistan could leave her stake in Kashmir if India decides to hand over Mallika to her.
Political analysts felt that since Mallika's fame has grown by leaps and bounds in Pakistan following her generous display at the Cannes film festival, Musharaff wants to appease the public of Pakistan by atleast winning Mallika as he clearly knows that winning Kashmir would be next to impossible.
India's foreign affairs spokesperson categorically denied the scientific reports and asserted that Mallika was an inseperable part of India. The right wing Indian leaders accused Pakistan of trying to start another 'proxy war'. They claimed that Mallika's lifestyle was not just fashion but a 'way of life' on which the entire Mumbai film industry is based on.
When contacted about this, Mallika Sherawat claimed that she was an international figure who had several fans in US, Japan and rest of the world and that these countries were trying to confine her fame to just the subcontinent. The US government tried to intervene with the US secretary of state Condoleza Rice calling up both the Pakistan prime minister Pervez Mushraff and the Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh to speak about the issue. However, fearing that the US with its well oiled fashion industry, next only to its defense industry would walk away with Mallika, both these leaders asserted that the Mallika issue was an internal matter between India and Pakistan. Sources close to the white house said that Ms.Rice was 'shocked and awed' on how the two countries which always bicker against each other were so united in keeping the US out of the equation.
Most analysts felt that India could make a classy move by trading Mallika for Kashmir so that the long standing issue of Kashmir could at last come to an end. However some skeptical analysts warned that if this move was to materialize, there could be a nuclear showdown between the two countries in the future over Mallika. India and Pakistan, the two nuclear powers in the subcontinent have already fought three wars over Kashmir and the Mallika controversy has now created another potential bone of conflict.