Raghav Juyal,Dance Deewane host accused of making racial comment on Assam girl, apologises

Northeast and issues of intra-country racism seem to be an never-ending saga. This time the issue of racism erupted in social media when Raghav Juyal, the host of the popular reality TV show Dance Deewane 3, allegedly made racial comments about a contestant from Assam.

While introducing Guwahati’s Gunjan Singh Juyal used words like Momos and Chowmein in one of the episodes of the hit show Dance Deewane 3.

When judges of the show Remo D’Souza, Madhuri Dixit, and others questioned Raghav’s  ‘Chinese’ gibberish he told them that they have a contestant in their midst who can comprehend him.  

The alleged ‘Chinese’ jibes directed at the contestant from Assam, however, did not sit well with a section of social media users, especially with those belonging to the Northeast, with the video going viral.

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma and other political leaders of Northeast India also objected to the comments of the television presenter.

The Assam Chief Minister took to Twitter and condemning the act of Juyal wrote, “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.”

Tripura royal scion Pradyot Manikya Deb Barma also took to Twitter and condemned the racially coloured remaks.

“What angers me is that this 3rd rate comedian is not just comparing us Northeastern people to the Chinese but look at the way the audience is laughing and clapping at this terrible joke ! And then people question us why we feel that we are not part of the mainstream ?” he tweeted.

However, the clip appears to be old, as the host has already left the show.

Social media users were furious with Juyal’s racist comments and asked him to issue an unconditional apology.

Meanwhile, after the news went viral, Raghav Juyal clarified in a video that people shouldn’t judge him based on just a trimmed clip of an episode. He also said that the online hate he was receiving for his comments was affecting him, his mental health and those who are close to him.

“A short clip of my show has gone viral on the internet for which I am being called racist. Now I would like to clarify that she told us that she can speak Chinese Gibberish during the early days when we asked her about her hobbies,” he said.

“I am very much connected with Northeast. I have families, friends in Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland, ” he added. He urged everyone to watch all the episodes of the show and to know the complete context of his comments.

 

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Worth noting is that casual racism and ‘othering’ of Indians from the northeast is one of the most common types of racism in India.

People from Northeast India are sometimes racially discriminated against or mocked for their appearance, with derogatory terms such as “Momos,” “Chinese,” “Chinky,” and others used against them in different parts of the country.