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Gere, Shetty cleared over embrace in public

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Wednesday, May 16, 2007
Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty and Hollywood actor Richard Gere will not face legal action over their public kiss at a charity event last month, the Supreme Court has ruled.

Shetty was ordered to appear before a judge in Rajasthan this morning after a warrant was issued for her arrest following the incident on April 26.

Gere and Shetty were speaking at a HIV/AIDS awareness event in New Delhi, when Richard swept the beauty into his arms and kissed her several times.

Public displays of affection are taboo in India and arrest warrants were issued for both Gere and Shetty after a citizen filed a complaint, accusing the couple of committing an "obscene act".

Shetty petitioned the Supreme Court to suspend legal proceedings and also asked for all cases against her to be transferred to her home city of Mumbai, at a hearing yesterday.

The court granted the suspension, which stops police and other courts from taking action against her and the Hollywood actor earlier today.

Her lawyer Anand Grover says a separate petition would be filed to prevent police from stopping her from traveling abroad, adding, "It is an unusual case. No case is made out such kissing issue and no restriction should put on her in moving around".

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