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Feb 19, 2009 at 01:13pm IST

Slum kids happy over going to US for Oscars

Mumbai: As we walk towards Mohammed Azharuddin's house - the shanty where the young Salim from Slumdog Millionaire stays - we only find his old father, Mohammed Ismail, a TB patient, resting.

Across the road, young Latika or Rubina Ali stays in a one room hutment. Her sister informs us that Azhar and Rubina are on their way back from the passport office.

The Slumdog kids, as they are known these days, are well on their way to Los Angeles for the Oscars.

“Not in my dreams did I ever think that I will go to America,” says Rubina.

“Even I would not have ever thought this but I am really happy,” adds Azharuddin.

Meanwhile the controversy surrounding the compensation given to the child actors for the film continues.

Though producer Christian Colson reiterates that the family was given money from a fund set up to build a new home, the parents deny it.

“Just provide us with a house, we don’t want any car or money,” says Azhar’s father Mohammed Ismail.

“They have provided us with anything,” adds Azhar’s mother Shameem Ismail.

However far away from these money matters are little Rubina and Azhar who have been assured of their passports by Thursday. But with Visa formalities yet to be settled, it remains to be seen whether these kids actually make it to the Oscars.

“I have to buy clothes and shoes for the award ceremony,” says an excited Rubina.

“I have to thank Danny uncle as I am going to America,” adds Azhar.

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