Vivek Oberoi deletes Aishwarya Rai meme, says ‘can’t even think of being disrespectful to any woman’

Actor Vivek Oberoi has deleted a meme featuring Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Salman Khan and Abhishek Bachchan about exit polls and has apologised for posting it. Vivek had earlier said he sees nothing offensive about the meme, which was seen as “crass and distasteful”.

“Sometimes what appears to be funny and harmless at first glance to one, may not be so to others. I have spent the last 10 years empowering more than 2000 underprivileged girls, I cant even think of being disrespectful to any woman ever,” he wrote as an apology, adding, “Even if one woman is offended by my reply to the meme, it calls for remedial action. Apologies, tweet deleted.”

Vivek, who reportedly dated Aishwarya in the early 2000s, posted a meme with three panels, one with him, another with Salman Khan and a third with her husband Abhishek and daughter Aaradhya on Twitter.

“Disgusting and classless,” actor Sonam Kapoor reacted to the meme while actor-turned-politician Urmila Matondkar said, “Very disgraceful and in extreme bad taste of #VivekOberoi to put up such a disrespectful post. At least show the decency to pull off the post if not apologise to the lady and her little girl.”

The National Commission of Women had also condemned the meme as “misogynistic”, demanding a response from Vivek. “I would want to meet the Women’s Commission… I have been working on women empowerment since the past 10 years, and I don’t just talk about it on social media… I am very careful as far as respect for women is concerned. I personally feel that there’s no disrespect (in what happened). I would meet the Women’s Commission and if they explain to me what is wrong in it, I would apologise,” Vivek told the media on Monday night.

The meme was originally shared by someone else on Twitter, but Vivek picked it up, writing, “Haha! Creative! No politics here just life!”

Explaining his post, he said: “Someone sent me a meme, I laughed at it and gave a response. It doesn’t have bad words, it has nothing abusive, no sensational photo… It has a beautiful family photograph of Aishwarya, Aaradhya and Abhishek together, and they are happy… May God give them lots of happiness.”

Vivek will be seen in PM Narendra Modi, a biopic on the life of the Prime Minister, on May 24.

First Published:
May 21, 2019 10:09 IST

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