The veteran actor Saif Ali Khan, who was felicitated with Padma Shri in the year 2010, which is the fourth highest civilian award, says he wanted to return it. On the chat show of Arbaaz Khan named ‘Pinch’, Saif was taken through some of the mean tweets about him. One of few tweets read, “This two-bit thug who bought a Padma Shri, named his son Taimur and beat up some people in a restaurant. How the hell did he get a role in ‘Sacred Games’? He can hardly act.” Reacting to which he stated, “Two-bit thug, I’m not… Bought a Padma Shri is also not possible. It is beyond me to bribe the Indian government. You will have to ask more senior people. But I thought I don’t want to accept it. There are so many senior actors in the industry who deserved it even more than me, and had not gotten one…and it was very embarrassing. And of course, there are some people who have it, I feel deserve it less than me also.”
Saif Ali Khan has said that he has changed his mind of keeping the Padma Shri with him after a conversation with his father, the late Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi. He stated, “I wanted to give it back. I didn’t want to accept it. My father said to me, ‘I don’t think you are in a position to refuse the Indian government.’ So I said ‘okay’ and I very happily took it. I look at it in a way that I hope in time…cause I’m not done yet and I’m enjoying acting, I’m doing fairly well, I’m happy with what’s happening… I hope in time, when I look back and people look at it, they will say, ‘Okay, I think he deserves an honour for the work he has done”. During the ‘Pinch’ session, Saif Ali Khan has also had a witty reply to a troll that questioned him about being a ‘Nawab’. The troll has had questions about him on “being a nawab and still clinging on to rotten ‘hukumat’”. After reading it, Saif said, “I have never been interested in being a nawab. I prefer eating kebabs”.
Saif Ali Khan is a master at dodging off the trolls as he is well known for his wit and humor and questioned him for turning up at actress Sonam Kapoor’s wedding in a simple white kurta and pyjama. To this he replied, “It was her wedding, not mine”.