Bollywood actor Aamir Khan on Thursday said it was the government’s prerogative to decide on brand ambassadors for its schemes, and accepted its decision to drop him from the Incredible India campaign. “I respect the decision of the government to discontinue with my services,” Aamir Khan said, a day after Tourism Minister Mahesh Sharma announced that his contract with Incredible India had expired. Quelling murmurs that Khan’s view on intolerance had something to do with the decision, the actor said: “Whether I am brand ambassador or not, India will remain incredible,” ANI reported.

Soon after, PTI reported that Bollywood baadshah Amitabh Bachchan is the Tourism Ministry’s first choice as the new face of its Incredible India campaign. According to a ministry official, actors Akshay Kumar, Deepika Padukone and Priyanka Chopra are being considered for the position, as well. Bachchan is currently the brand ambassador of tourism in Gujarat, which has seen an “upsurge” since he was hired by the state, the official added.

On Wednesday, there was day-long confusion about whether Aamir Khan was still a part of the Tourism Ministry’s headlining ad series. First, media reports claimed that Khan was fired from Incredible India. Hours later, the Tourism Ministry issued a statement stating that he had not been removed. In the evening, Sharma said Khan's contract as the brand ambassador for the government's campaign had expired.

Khan was embroiled in a controversy last month after he said that his wife does not feel safe in India after a series of incidents of communal violence (pictured above). Many took these views to be a lack of patriotism, though Khan did not suggest anything of the sort.