Diljit Dosanjh, Neeti Mohan and Shankar Mahadevan have faced the ire of social media users when they were found to make an offensive joke on the #Metoo movement on national television.
They were judges on reality show Rising Star 3 when they were reported to have made the remark.
As the incident panned out, during one of the episodes of the show, two contestants began praising Neeti Mohan. They said that the singer looked “raapchik” and “kadak” in a red sari, reports The Quint.
Neeti then expressed her intolerance of such inappropriate and sexist comments. She said that she was representing women and such language can’t be used against any woman.
Quint also reports that then Neeti Mohan started to walk off in protest. Diljit Dosanjh and Shankar Mahadevan, after criticizing the actions of the contestants, intervened and told the show organisers to ask the contestants to come later.
However, all the three judges soon broke into a fit of laughter and admitted that they were joking. Shankar Mahadevan also said that the prank was, in fact, the contestant's idea.
Twitter user and gender equality activist, Kirthi Jayakumar, then took to the social media website to publish a thread of tweets condemning the actions of the judges.
Absolutely appalled at how @neetimohan18, @diljitdosanjh, @Shankar_Live and the rest of the crew literally threw the #MeToo movement under the bus on @ColorsTV. Speaking up about sexual harassment is not easy, and here you're all belittling it as "mazaak".— Kirthi (@kirthijayakumar) March 23, 2019
"Absolutely appalled at how @neetimohan18, @diljitdosanjh, @Shankar_Live and the rest of the crew literally threw the #MeToo movement under the bus on @ColorsTV," said Kirthi. "Speaking up about sexual harassment is not easy, and here you're all belittling it as "mazaak. Terrible that @neetimohan18 says that she represents all girls on the stage, and then threatens to walk out in response to what is clearly inappropriate and verbal sexual harassment, and then proceeds to laugh at how it is all a prank. Seriously, sexual harassment is not a joke."
Kirthi updated the thread, saying, "And now @diljitdosanjh apologized to them!! @Shankar_Live says it was a prank by one contestant on another. Thanks to how casually you all treat an issue so serious, there is ZERO accountability in this industry for sexual harassment. I truly hope you all introspect and think about how you've undermined such a grave issue. You've completely disrespected the emotional labour it takes to fight harassment, to speak up and to seek redress. You've reduced it all to a joke @neetimohan18 @Shankar_Live @diljitdosanjh."
She later also added, "Oh. My. God. This is Disgusting. Aditya Narayan just asked Diwakar Sharma, who is blind, to describe how each of the judges look. I'm so sickened by this apathy and disrespect. Disability is not a joke, you insensitive people."