Actress Priyanka Chopra Jonas has recently been under fire after an attendee of BeautyCon in Los Angeles California questioned her about a tweet referring to her support of the Indian Army. The tweet was seen as a comment against India’s neighbor Pakistan.
Malik asked Chopra that by tweeting these words, if she supports a nuclear war with Pakistan. Although the most current news regarding India has to do with Indian soldiers occupying Kashmiri land, Malik asked this question because Chopra Jonas posted this tweet in February 2019, when there were high tensions between India and Pakistan. The whole world was concerned with this conflict because both countries have nuclear weapons, which are known to be the most dangerous weapons to humanity. Even a disagreement between the two countries catches the world’s attention because the threat level is extremely high not just for India and Pakistan, but also for their neighboring countries and possibly for the entire continent because of radiation exposure.
Chopra Jonas’s tweet can be seen as patriotic by some, but she has been called insensitive for tweeting support for the military at a time of possible conflict with another nuclear power.
People are also criticizing the way she answered Malik’s question. Malik started with “So, it was kinda hard hearing you talk about humanity, because as your neighbor — a Pakistani — I know you’re a bit of a hypocrite.”, referring to Chopra Jonas’s status as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. “You are a UNICEF ambassador for peace and you’re encouraging nuclear war against Pakistan. There’s no winner in this.” Malik ended with this before Chopra Jonas stopped her, “As a Pakistani, millions of people like me have supported you in your business of Bollywood.”
Chopra Jonas then asked if Malik was done with her rant so she could answer. She continued to say that she has many Pakistani friends and she is Indian. Chopra Jonas stated: war is not something that I’m really fond of, but I am patriotic… but I think that all of us have a sort of middle ground that we all have to walk”. At the end of her statement she said to Malik: “The way you came at me right now, girl, don’t yell. We’re all here for love. Don’t yell. Don’t embarrass yourself.”
Many people who viewed Chopra Jonas respond to Malik have said that Chopra Jonas attempted to invalidate Malik by telling her that she is just “venting” and tried to deflect from answering the question. In the video, it can be seen that Chopra Jonas does not answer directly.
The calls for her to her title of UNICEF Goodwill Ambassadorship to be taken away are on the basis of that her tweet from February can be seen as encouraging war between two countries and her avoiding the question of if she supports nuclear war. Some say that this not a good representation of the United Nations goals or of UNICEF and that Chopra Jonasshould step down. While others applaud her for being a good patriotic Indian and not letting someone get to her. There are also others who think that Malik was in the wrong for asking a political question at a beauty convention and should have stuck with a beauty related question.
Pakistani officials and citizens are outraged by the incident and are working on petitions to have Chopra Jonas step down.
So far, it seems that Chopra Jonas will not be stepping down from her UNICEF role, and will most likely be receiving an award from the organization later in the year. UNICEF has not made any statements pertaining to Chopra Jonas on her interaction with Malik at BeautyCon.