Shahid Kapoor performing at the IIFA Awards in a file photo
Shahid Kapoor performing at the IIFA Awards in a file photo Image Credit: IANS

Bollywood fans will have to wait just a little longer to meet some of their favourite stars with the 22nd edition of the International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) awards now rescheduled to May.

According to an update by the organisers, the IIFA Weekend and the Awards, which were earlier scheduled for March 18 and 19, have now been postponed to May 20 and 21.

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Varun Dhawan performing at the IIFA Awards in a file photo Image Credit: GN Archives

In an official statement, the organisers cited the pandemic as the reason for the delay. “The 22nd edition of the much-anticipated IIFA awards 2022 has been postponed to 20th and 21st of May 2022, with due regard to the changing circumstances in the spread of COVID-19 virus globally and keeping the health and safety of IIFA’s fans and the general community at large. The IIFA awards 2022 Celebrations were originally scheduled in March 2022.”

The statement further continued: “We at IIFA are responsible and committed to ensure the safety of the citizens and multitudes of IIFA fans who travel from across the globe to attend and experience the magic of IIFA. We sincerely regret the inconvenience caused, and hope that all concerned understand the sensitivity of the situation.”

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Bollywood star Salman Khan performing at the IIFA Image Credit: AFP

Held in collaboration with the Department of Culture and Tourism — Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi), and Miral, organisers had earlier revealed that Bollywood superstar Salman Khan would host the awards night that is scheduled to take place at Etihad Arena, part of Yas Bay Waterfront on Yas Island.

The awards are also set to commemorate the 75th year of India’s independence and the UAE’s year-long Golden Jubilee celebrations, marking its 50th anniversary.

A slew of Bollywood celebrities are expected to fly into the UAE to witness the spectacle on a grand scale that includes music, fashion and — of course — the awards being given out for the top movies of the year.