Dance Deewane 3 host Raghav Juyal issues clarification after Assam CM criticises his 'racist rhetoric' against Guwahati contestant
Raghav Juyal clarified that his remark on Gunjan Sinha, a young Assamese contestant in Dance Deewane 3, was taken out of context: 'You will not call me racist if you'd see the whole show.'
Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Tuesday said racism should be condemned "unequivocally" after a contestant from Guwahati on a dance reality show was subjected to racist rhetoric.
In a clip of Dance Deewane 3 that has gone viral on social media, the host-dancer of the show, Raghav Juyal, is seen introducing a contestant from the North East while speaking gibberish, seemingly to mock Mandarin, the language spoken by the Chinese people.
When the judges, including actor Madhuri Dixit-Nene and filmmaker Remo D'Souza, ask him what he is trying to do, the host replies as he casually makes a racist remark on the young contestant, Gunjan Sinha. "People might not be able to understand her Chinese but they surely understand her dance," he is heard saying in the 40-second clip.
It's 2021, but the #racist Indians still practicing "Chinese" "momo" "ching chong" #racism as a comic element on their national television with their #bollywood celebs applauding it. The racist host @TheRaghav_Juyal introducing Gunjan Sinha from Assam in a show on @ColorsTV pic.twitter.com/qcPsgiWfXg
— C. Thounaojam (@manaobi101) November 15, 2021
The third season of the show, which went on air earlier this year, concluded last month. The chief minister took to Twitter and said the "racist rhetoric" against the contestant was unacceptable.
Here's the tweet by Himanta Biswa Sarma
It has come to my notice that a popular reality show host has used racist rhetoric against a young participant from Guwahati. This is shameful and totally unacceptable. Racism has no place in our country and we should all condem it unequivocally. — Himanta Biswa Sarma (@himantabiswa) November 16, 2021
Dance Deewane was judged by Dixit-Nene, and choreographers Tushar Kalia and Dharmesh Yelande. D'Souza featured on the said episode as a special guest.
While there has been no official statement from the channel as yet, Juyal (30) shared a video on Instagram in an attempt to "clarify the misunderstanding." The host said he wanted to share "the story" behind the small clip that is circulating on the internet for the sake of his mental health and the people who know him.
"When the children come on the show, we ask them what their hobbies are. Gunjan said 'I can talk in Chinese, I have this talent'. And we used to laugh at the things children say. When we asked her to speak Chinese, she started talking in gibberish. From there onwards, we would ask her to speak in 'Chinese' on every episode or ask her to speak in the language of another planet" he said in the video.
According to Juyal, in the final episodes, he introduced Gunjan in the same gibberish Chinese ahead of her acts on the show. "You will not call me racist if you'd see the whole show," he added.
The host, who has starred in films like ABCD 2 and Street Dancer 3D, said he has a strong connection to the North East. "I have my family in Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh. I have friends in Nagaland with whom I've grown up in boarding school. I'm someone who tries to show things politically correct, and who takes a stand on injustice and racism. Instead, I often get trolled whenever I take a stand for a religion, caste, culture or creed," he said.
Towards the end of the video, Juyal said he apologises to those whose sentiments were hurt. "I'm so sorry if I've hurt your sentiments. It was neither my or the channel's motives that something like this happens. But before making a clip viral and judging, I'd really want you to watch the whole show," he added.
Here's Raghav Juyal's clarification video on Instagram
Here's another Instagram video Juyal posted as part of his clarification
View this post on Instagram
With inputs from Press Trust of India.
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