The official excuse was that he was shooting but he wanted to avoid any unpleasantness by coming face-to-face with Shahrukh. A source present at the party says, "Preity had invited Salman since they are good friends but he told Preity that he was shooting in Panvel for Main Aur Mrs Khanna and that he wouldn't be able to make it."
The source says, "At Milind Deora's reception, where both SRK and Sallu were present, it was easy to avoid each other as it was a big affair but Preity's bash was a intimate gathering of about 20 close friends and it would have been impossible to avoid eye contact. Salman didn't want an awkward situation again and opted out."
Also present at Preity's party were Akshay and Twinkle Kumar, Arjun Rampal and Mehr Jessia, Amrita Arora and her fiancEe Shakeel Ladhak, Farah Khan and Shirish Kunder, Sanjay and Maheep Kapoor, Chunky and Bhavna Pandey, Karan Johar, Riteish Deshmukh and Farhan Akhtar.
Dino Morea (in one of those rare instances) came sans girlfriend Lara Dutta and was seen chatting merrily with ex-girlfriend Nandita Mahtani. This after Lara had walked out in a huff when Nandita had sat on Dino's lap and flirted with him at a party at Shahrukh Khan's place.
Akshay Kumar who dropped in with biwi Twinkle made a quick exit after wishing Preity as he had to catch an early morning flight to Delhi. Shahrukh and Akshay didn't chat with each other at all as they normally do.
Invited but absent
Arbaaz and Malaika Arora Khan. Malaika was in Dubai for a show; Arbaaz was shooting. Kareena Kapoor, Saif Ali Khan, Priyanka Chopra and Rani Mukherjee.
After Milind Deora's society wedding, Shahrukh and Salman Khan have made it a point to studiously avoid events where they might bump into each other. Both Khans were invited to Preity Zinta's home for her birthday party on Saturday night. However Salman didn't turn up for PZ's party. Shahrukh reached the party early and on hearing about this, he decided not to go.