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We Love You Shah Rukh Khan But Your ‘Idli’ Remark For Ram Charan Is Just Not Palatable

Wed 06 Mar 2024    
The Brew News Team | 3 min read

The Badshah of Bollywood, Shah Rukh Khan, is facing flak on social media for his remark directed at South superstar Ram Charan a couple of days back at a grand event hosted by the Ambanis in Jamnagar. The incident has sparked debate on social media and raised questions about accountability and cultural sensitivity. The three-day-long pre-wedding bash of Anant Ambani and Radhika Merchant was a star-studded affair. It was graced by people from different walks of life, including Bollywood as well as international artists, politicians, businessmen and sports personalities. The guests blessed the couple and some of them also set the stage on fire with their energetic performances, videos of which have gone viral on social media platforms. 

In one such viral video, the three Khans – Shah Rukh, Salman and Aamir – are seen performing the hook steps of some of their popular tracks together. The video has come as a treat of their fans as getting a glimpse of the superstars together is not very common. In fact, the trio shared the stage in 2014 at an event. They may not have featured together in a movie but they’ve created history at the Ambani event for entertaining the audience with their act. While fans loved their performance, a section of social media users have called out Shah Rukh for his ‘racist’ remark against Ram Charan.

Here’s what happened:

While the three Khans were on stage, they looked for Ram Charan as they wanted to perform the hook step of Oscar-winning song Naatu Naatu from the film RRR. At that time, Shah Rukh eagerly searched for Ram Charan and requested him to join them on stage. He repeatedly called out, “Where are you, Ram Charan?” In a seemingly playful manner, Shah Rukh began speaking gibberish Telugu, incorporating the word “idli” into his speech. While this moment elicited mixed reactions, with some finding it amusing, others criticised Shah Rukh, accusing him of being ‘racially insensitive’.

As netizens bashed Shah Rukh, Ram Charan’s makeup artist  Zeba Hassan also joined the conversation and said that she walked out after the incident. 

Should Shah Rukh apologise for his remark? 

The incident has led to a controversy and several social media users have called it ‘racially insensitive’. Shah Rukh, as a public figure with a massive influence and following, should take responsibility for his words and actions. Racial insensitivity, whether intentional or not, might have its negative consequences. 

Also, in a diverse and multicultural society like India, where we often celebrate unity in diversity, such remarks can be deeply hurtful, not only for Ram Charan but also for his millions of fans and followers. Therefore, issuing a sincere apology could demonstrate accountability and a commitment to fostering understanding and respect among all communities.

It may also be noted that Shah Rukh’s remark comes at a time when the Bollywood vs South Indian cinema debate is longstanding. Celebrities have often spoken about the unification of regional and Bollywood film industries, however, when incidents like these happen, the audience is left with no choice but to question the intent behind their statements on inclusivity.

In fact, just last year, Shah Rukh collaborated with Tamil filmmaker Atlee to deliver the biggest hit of his career, Jawan. He has successfully tapped into a new market, which is very different from the Hindi film industry.

Throughout his career spanning several decades in the industry, Shah Rukh has not done an out-and-out South Indian film as a lead actor. However, he has a loyal fans in the South as well, who leave no stone unturned to celebrate every release of the actor with much reverence.

(This article is published under a mutual content partnership arrangement between The Brew News and The Free Press Journal)

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