‘Shouldn’t be using these words….’ – Saina Nehwal reacts as actor Siddharth apologies for his ‘rude joke’

Actor Siddharth, most popularly known for his role in Bollywood cult classic Rang De Basanti, landed himself in trouble when he left a distasteful remark on badminton star Saina Nehwal’s tweet, where the shuttler had expressed her concern over the recent security breach of PM Modi’s visit to Punjab. For the unversed, PM’s convoy was stuck in traffic for close to 20 minutes, due to the farmers’ protests, before he returned to the airport in Bathinda on January 5. 

Thus, Saina had taken to her Twitter handle and wrote, “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 anrachists.”

To this, Siddharth had tweeted, “Subtle cock champion of the world Thank God we have protectors of India (sic).” This, led to a widespread criticism of the actor for his usage of words on the social media platform; with National Commission for Women (NCW) urging the DGP Maharashtra to take strict action. 

ALSO READ | Siddharth vs Nehwal: NCW asks DGP Maharashtra to take action as actor defends ‘lewd’ comments on shuttler

On Tuesday (January 11), Siddharth issued an apology and 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 jokeif 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 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.”

ALSO READ | Very wrong to make such derogatory statement, Siddharth should apologise: Saina Nehwal’s father

In response to Siddharth’s apology, the star shuttler and one-time Olympic medallist Saina has also reacted to his comments. In an interaction with Times Now, Saina said, “Good he has apologised. Shouldn’t be using these words for a woman. I was surprised to see myself trending on Twitter. I’ve never interacted with him but all I can say is God bless him.” Earlier, Siddharth had defended his comments by tweeting, “Cock and bull. That`s the reference. Reading otherwise is unfair and leading. Nothing disrespectful was intended, said or insinuated. Period.”

With the actor’s apology and Saina’s acceptance, it seems the matter will gradually die down. Nonetheless, all might not be over for Siddharth as the NSW chairperson, Rekha Sharma, has filed a complaint against the actor. It remains to be seen if any action will be taken against him.

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