Actor Siddharth apologises to Saina Nehwal after backlash over his comment

Siddharth’s comment on Saina Nehwal’s tweet about the security lapse in Punjab during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit has received heavy criticism for its sexist tone.

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Actor Siddharth and badminton player Saina Nehwal: Siddharth apologised to Saina after backlash over his comment 
On January 5, Saina Nehwal, who is also a BJP member, had condemned the security lapse in Punjab when PM Modi’s convoy was stopped for over 20 minutes on a flyover in Bathinda as the road was blocked by protesting farmers. She tweeted: “No nation can claim itself to be safe if the security of its own PM gets compromised. I condemn, in the strongest words possible, the cowardly attack on PM Modi by anarchists. #BharatStandsWithModi #PMModi(sic).” Responding to Saina’s tweet, Siddharth wrote on January 10: “Subtle cock champion of the world… Thank God we have protectors of India. Folded hands. Shame on you #Rihanna (sic).”

In his apology which he posted on Twitter, Siddharth wrote: “Dear Saina, I want to apologise to you for my rude joke that I wrote as a response to a tweet of yours, a few days ago. I may disagree with you on many things but even my disappointment or anger when I read your tweet, cannot justify my tone and words. I know I have more grace in me than that.

“As for the joke… If a joke needs to be explained, then it wasn’t a very good joke to begin with. Sorry about a joke that didn’t land. I, however, must insist my word play and humour had none of the malicious intent that so many people from all quarters have attributed to it. I am a staunch feminist ally and i assure you there was no gender implied in my tweet and certainly no intent to attack you as a woman. I hope we can put this behind us and that you will accept my letter. You will always be my Champion. Honestly, Siddharth (sic),” he said.

Saina had earlier responded to Siddharth’s comment the day it was posted and said, “I used to like him as an actor but this was not nice. He can express himself with better words but I guess it’s Twitter and you remain noticed with such words and comments.”Saina’s father Harvir Singh Nehwal had also condemned Siddharth’s comment and had sought an apology from him.

In an initial response to the criticism, Siddharth said that “nothing disrespectful was intended”. “‘COCK & BULL’ That’s the reference. Reading otherwise is unfair and leading! Nothing disrespectful was intended, said or insinuated. Period (sic),” he had previously tweeted.

Shiv Sena Rajya Sabha MP Priyanka Chaturvedi, singer Chinmayi Sripaada, Chairperson of National Commision for Women Rekha Sharma And law minister Kiren Rijiju had also criticised Siddarth for his comment.

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