Saif Ali Khan
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Commitment first, say stars!

Saif Ali Khan

New Delhi, April 26 -- Bollywood stars Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Farhan Akhtar and Aamir Khan might have chosen to stay back in Mumbai to cast their votes for the Lok Sabha polls, but for several others, it's certainly the International Indian Film Festival Awards (IIFA) in Tampa Bay, US, over voting.

While this Bollywood bunch, including actor Anupam Kher, is being criticized from all quarters for choosing to attend the 15th edition of the event, they have tried to justify their absence by saying that they had committed to the awards show beforehand.

"We had made a commitment to IIFA over five months back... election dates were announced much later, so we had to be here," says actor Saif Ali Khan.

Known to be politically aware, actor Vivek Oberoi too skipped the polls and cited "prior commitment" as his reason to be in Florida for the awards.

Actor Ritesh Deshmukh says he already cast his vote from Latoor in Maharashtra on April 17. "It's unfortunate that many people from Bollywood couldn't vote, but it's unfair to blame them or tag them as irresponsible citizens. There are a lot of commitments involved - physical as well as financial commitments," he says.