A woman accused Priyanka Chopra Jonas of being a “hypocrite” for tweeting in support of Indian armed forces and “encouraging nuclear war against Pakistan” amid increasing conflict between the two countries.
Ayesha Malik confronted the Indian actress during an audience Q&A session at Beautycon in Los Angeles on Saturday.
"It was kind of hard hearing you talk about humanity because as your neighbor, a Pakistani, I know you're a bit of a hypocrite. You tweeted on February 26, 'Jai Hind #IndianArmedForces,'“ Malik said. "You are a UNICEF ambassador for peace and you're encouraging nuclear war against Pakistan.”
Chopra’s February tweet was in response to a series of airstrikes carried out by India on Pakistani territory. “Jai Hind” is a commonly used, patriotic slogan that loosely translates to “Victory for India” in English.
Priyanka Chopra tweeted during a time when we were this 👌🏽 close to sending nukes to one another. Instead of advocating for peace she tweeted in support of the Indian army pic.twitter.com/LhbMkOW59v— Ayesha Malik (@Spishaa) August 11, 2019
Malik’s accusations come during a period of high tension at the India-Pakistan border after India’s government, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, made the decision to take over control of Kashmir — India’s only Muslim-majority state, and an active nuclear flashpoint which has suffered much of the conflict between the neighboring countries.
Though security staff at the event was quick to pull the mic out of Malik’s hand — even before she could finish speaking — Chopra addressed the question and defended her message, saying that she’s “patriotic.”
"Whenever you're done venting ... got it, done? OK, cool," Chopra said. “So, I have many, many friends from Pakistan and I am from India, and war is not something that I am really fond of but I am patriotic. So, I'm sorry if I hurt sentiments to people who do love me and have loved me, but I think that all of us have a sort of middle ground that we all have to walk, just like you probably do as well.”
“Whenever you’re don’t venting”. Sorry, didn’t realize that speaking on a humanitarian crisis was “venting” pic.twitter.com/OqCLgjDNa1— Ayesha Malik (@Spishaa) August 11, 2019
"The way you came at me right now?" Chopra then scolded Malik. "Girl, don't yell. We're all here for love. Don't yell. Don't embarrass yourself. But we all walk that middle ground, but thank you for your enthusiasm and your question and your voice."
However, many people were upset with how the actress responded. One person took issue with Chopra’s dismissal of Malik’s question about human rights violations as “venting.”
It's so belittling. I hardly call the serious human rights violations "venting"— Sara M. Saleh (@SaraSalehOz) August 12, 2019
Others pointed out that by Chopra saying “I have Pakistani friends,” she was not making a strong case for herself.
Priyanka Chopra is incredibly condescending & arrogant: “girl, don’t yell, don’t embarrass yourself”.— Sana Saeed (@SanaSaeed) August 12, 2019
Also, imagine responding with “I have Pakistani friends” after being asked about supporting war between the two nuclear powers. pic.twitter.com/bLk8005dK6
Her reaction was pure condescension & dismissal.— Jodi Owen 🇺🇸⚢🇬🇧 (@JodiOwen66) August 12, 2019
“I have friends who are Pakistani”?!
Like we’ve never heard that “I’m not bigoted” defense before.🙄@priyankachopra came across self-absorbed, entitled, pompous, patronising. To some she’s pretty, but it’s clearly only skin deep.
She came with that line, ‘I got black friends’. Her cancellation is long overdue.— Zain Nazawali (@ZNazawali) August 12, 2019
Others, however, came to Chopra’s defense and accused Malik of being an opportunist.
Ayesha Malik had one goal for BeautyCon to attack and slander Priyanka Chopra’s name to further her own agenda of becoming a viral influencer.— don’t embarass yourself (@hipslikePC) August 12, 2019
That is why she had someone “professionally” record her speaking, a prepared speech. She wants the fame and that’s it.
Well that was an outstanding response for such a rant. Given that this was some BeautyCon stuff. Thanks @priyankachopra for respecting her even though she clearly didn't do same. I doubt she cares if not trolling and looking 4 attention. Wonder when being patriotic became a crime— Chukwunonye Emmanuel (@ChukwunonyeEmm1) August 12, 2019
What she did at BeautyCon was standing up for herself. She doesn’t need to be desperate about it by releasing stupid statements besides she’s nothing like other attention hungry celebs you know. People got over the cig thing so they’ll get over this too. Relax!— 𝒢𝑜𝑜𝒹 𝒱𝒾𝒷𝑒𝓈 (@piggy_chopps) August 12, 2019
Malik did not immediately respond to Yahoo Lifestyle’s request for comment, but she took to Twitter on Sunday to explain why the issue has a personal impact on her. She also called Chopra “irresponsible.”
It took me back to when I couldn’t reach my family because of the blackouts and how scared/helpless I was.— Ayesha Malik (@Spishaa) August 11, 2019
She gaslit me and turned the narrative around on me being the “bad guy” — as a UN ambassador this was so irresponsible.
I am always willing to listen, learn, and read. I just wanted to shed some light on something that directly impacted me and my family.— Ayesha Malik (@Spishaa) August 12, 2019
I’m always open for communication.
Now there are calls on Twitter for UNICEF to remove Chopra as a Goodwill Ambassador.
Chopra has yet to publicly comment since the incident at Beautycon.
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