‘Top Chef’ Host Padma Lakshmi & Author Salman Rushdie Divorce

LOS ANGELES, Calif. (July 2, 2007) — “Top Chef” host Padma Lakshmi’s marriage to Nobel Prize-winning author Salman Rushdie is over, according to a rep for the author.

“Salman Rushdie has agreed to divorce his wife, Padma Lakshmi, because of her desire to end their marriage,” spokeswoman Jin Auh said in a statement issued to Reuters. “He asks that the media respect his privacy at this difficult time,” the statement also said.

Rushdie, 60, and Lakshmi, 36, were married in New York in April 2004.

Among the 275 guests at the ceremony were comics Steve Martin and Robert Klein, as well as members of the international literary community.

It was the fourth marriage for Rushdie, whose previous three marriages also ended in divorce.

Two weeks ago, Rushdie – whose 1989 novel The Satanic Verses sparked death threats that forced him to live in hiding for nine years – was knighted by Britain’s Queen Elizabeth.

Lakshmi’s “Top Chef” airs on BRAVO.

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