#Opinion

Ravindra Jadeja, You Can’t Share A Pic Of Yourself Smoking And Say You Don’t Endorse It

ravindra jadeja pushpa look
Ravindra Jadeja Pushpa Look: Indian cricketer Ravindra Jadeja is not new to controversy and endorsing something he ‘may’ not support. One of the many traits that celebrities tend to have. For example, Indian celebs do not support colourism in the United States but will be the front face for skin lightening, whitening creams in advertisements at home. A recent tweet by Jadeja also hangs from a similar thread.

On January 12, the 33-year-old cricketer posted on his Twitter feed, a picture of himself recreating Allu Arjun’s look from his recent Telegu film, Pushpa: The Rise. The picture is quite a recreation of Arjun’s look as Pushpa from the film which has created a mass frenzy across the nation. In fact, Allu Arjun too comments on Jadeja’s tweet, writing, “Thaggede Le! (the catchphrase from his punchline dialogue from Pushpa: The Rise).


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Everything looks good in the post and one acknowledges Jadeja’s creativity until one reads the caption and suddenly you are unable to ignore the hypocrisy. “…P.S- Smoking and consumption of Tobacco are injurious to health. I do not endorse any form of smoking and the beedi used in the image is for graphic purposes only,” says the caption attached to the image. Once you read it the brain explodes with a question- Then why pose with it and inevitably endorse it to your 3.8 million followers on Twitter? Why share a picture that makes smoking look cool?

This dubious statement of Jadeja takes the mind back to all the actors and celebrities who talked about #BlackLivesMatter but blissfully chose to not open their mouths when it came to atrocities against Dalit and Muslims in India. How can we even forget their unbearable double standards!

Alas, Jadeja is not new to controversy. In July last year, he had tweeted, “#RAJPUTBOY Forever. Jai Hind (Indian national flag emoji). This tweet came after fellow cricketer Suresh Raina’s statement, “I am a Brahmin. I have been playing for Chennai since 2004. I love the culture here. I love my comrades. I am lucky to be part of CSK (Indian Premiere League team Chennai Super Kings).”


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This flaunting of caste in a country where despite having so many law enforcement agencies in place to stop the caste-based atrocities, things have hardly changed. Their statement rang loud in the ears of a massive group of upper caste people who for generations have been exploiting Dalits in the country.

Jadeja’s followers were posting Jai Hind and agreeing to a statement that created terror and tremor in the hearts of thousands of Dalits, who fear for their life every day in a caste-ridden society. According to the National Crime Record Bureau data, 50,291 cases of crime against the Scheduled Caste was registered in India in 2020. During the pandemic induced lockdown, these cases increased by 9.3 percent.

Celebrities need to take a long breath every time they intend to post anything on social media that they know can have a negative impact on their followers. It makes no sense to write a lofty caption against smoking when you are only going to put it next to a close-up picture of yourself doing the same, and that too with an effect that makes it appealing. Just writing a caption that smoking is injurious to health doesn’t absolve Jadeja of accountability here.

Views expressed are the author’s own.

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