Dance Deewane 3 host Raghav Juyal has landed into trouble after his remarks for a six-year-contestant drew widespread criticism, including from Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, for being “racist”. While Raghav has now issued a clarification, netizens slammed him for being insensitive and putting up a cringe-worthy act.
Raghav used words like “momo”, “chowmein” and “gibberish Chinese” for a northeastern participant, though the anchor claims that these were taken out of the context. The video shows Raghav introducing the young contestant speaking in gibberish and using words with alleged racist connotations. But Raghav has said that this should be understood in context of the situation and explained that the young girl maintained that she knew Chinese but would actually speak in the made-up language for fun. So it was like an inside joke of the show, Raghav said, that they would ask the girl to speak the language she knows and she will say all gibberish stuff and claim it’s Chinese. “Towards the end of the show, I decided to speak in a similar way to introduce her in one of the episodes. It has been an inside joke on the show and one shouldn’t judge us with just that clip,” he was quoted by the Indian Express.
He said that being called a racist affected his mental health and that of his family and while apologising to the people for hurting their sentiments, he said that he has friends and family in Northeast and he had no malicious intent.
Meanwhile the Assam CM had taken to Twitter to slam Raghav and said that racism is totally “unacceptable”.
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
While Raghav did issue a clarification, many furious netizens took to the social media to express their displeasure.
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
Racism!@TheRaghav_Juyal introducing Gunjan Sinha of Assam in #DanceDeewane3 of @ColorsTV with “Momo”, “Chinese” and celebs like @remodsouza, @MadhuriDixit have no objection in it.
People of Assam is not Chinese, yet such shows always do racism comments.
When will it stop? pic.twitter.com/cOTA8s8nvy
— Ron Bikash Gaurav (@RonBikashGaurav) November 15, 2021
Some people, however, stood in support of the anchor and said the comments were misconstrued as it was taken out of context. While others slammed judges Madhuri Dixit, Tushar Kalia, Dharmesh Yelande and guest Remo D’Souza for cheering Raghav on and not objecting to the act.