Mumbai: Neeraj Chopra is currently the nation’s favourite after winning the gold medal in javelin at Tokyo Olympics 2020. Everyone wants to know more about him and wants to have a conversation with him.
But what if one such conversation goes wrong? On Thursday (August 19), radio jockey Malishka Mendonsa sparked a controversy after she posted a video of her and the Red FM staff dancing in front of the ace javelin thrower and Olympic gold medal winner Neeraj Chopra.
In the interview, Chopra puts up an awkward smile as Mendonsa and her colleagues dance to the tunes of ‘Ude Jab jab zulfein teri.’ She even asked, “Humne zyaada toh nahi chhed diya na aapko? (We didn’t tease you too much, right?)“
Sharing the video, the radio jockey wrote on Twitter, “Ladiesssss…Yes I got the hard-hitting, deep answers too but..Take the first 4 secs before the cam moves to the zoom call to guess who we are dancing for 😉 #udejabjabzulfeinteri and then tell me I did it for all of us”
It did not just stop at the awkward dance performance where several women performed in front of 23-year-old Neeraj Chopra, towards the end of the interview, Mendonsa tried to hug Neeraj Chopra ‘virtually’ on behalf of the entire nation. An uncomfortable Chopra responded with the gesture of ‘Namaste’ and said, “Namaste aisa door se hi.“
While one can only guess how Chopra feels, Twitterati have given their verdict calling it ‘cringe’. People across India are calling the interview awkward, cringe, and even insulting towards the athlete.
Here’s what people are saying
Supreme Court advocate Shashank Shekhar Jha lamented, “Sad to see you guys doing this and even sad is the fact that RedFM India is allowing you all to do it. I mean, what if the genders were opposite in this case? Had RedFM allowed that too? Very sad!!!”
Reactions to the video were overwhelmingly negative, with several Twitter users pointing out that not only was the dancing unprofessional, it would have also been slammed as sexist, had gender roles been reversed. Many pointed out sexual objectification of the 23-year-old and called out the ignorance.
Neeraj Chopra recently scripted history at the Tokyo Olympics when he won gold at javelin throw – India’s first Olympic gold medal in athletics.
What are your thoughts on this?