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Art Historian Rajeev Sethi Asking Olympic Gold Medalist Neeraj Chopra About 'Sex Life' in Interview Gets Backlash

Neeraj Chopra wins gold at Olympics. (AP Photo)

Neeraj Chopra wins gold at Olympics. (AP Photo)

Neeraj Chopra has been quizzed by Indian media on a variety of things in his personal life, but some questions have perhaps been a bit too intrusive.

Neeraj Chopra scripted history by becoming the second-ever Indian to win an individual gold in the Olympics in August, and while his win was met with joy and appreciation by most Indians, in some situations, the questions posed to the Olympian may have been stretched a bit too far. Chopra is the only Indian to win a gold medal in Tokyo Olympics 2020. The 23-year-old farmer’s son from Khandra village near Panipat in Haryana produced the second throw of 87.58m in the finals to stun the athletics world and end India’s 100-year wait for a track and field medal in the Olympics. This was Neeraj Chopra’s first appearance at the Olympics but his journey towards clinching an Olympic berth has not been easy, amid a few injury setbacks hindering his goal.

In the interviews that followed, Chopra has been quizzed by Indian media on a variety of things in his personal life, but some questions have perhaps been a bit too intrusive. A clip of art historian Rajeev Sethi has been going viral on Twitter, drawing backlash for his comments, and the question he posed to the gold medalist.

In the claim that has gone viral, Rajeev Sethi exclaimed is heard asking Chopra, “How do you maintain a balance between your sex life and athletic training? I know this is a weird question," he says. He also says, that while it is a “strange question," there is some “serious question" to it as well.

Clearly uncomfortable with the question in the video, Chopra is heard saying, “Sorry, sir," implying he doesn’t want to answer the question. In the video, Sethi still persists with the question, and when Chopra turns it down a second time, the historian says, “Forgive me for asking that…," and before he can explain, Chopra cuts him off to say, “Aapke question se mera maan toh bhar gaya," which loosely translates to ‘My heart is overwhelmed by your question.’

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The video was met with much backlash.

This isn’t the first time an interview with Chopra has been criticized for being lewd. Earlier in August, RJ Malishka Mendonsa’s moves during a videocall to interview him, have majorly been deemed inappropriate. In the 45-second video, Mendonsa and some if her female colleagues were seen dancing to the song ‘uden jab jab zulfein teri‘ from the Bollywood movie Naya Daur. In the clip, Mendosa is also seen carrying a flower, which she gestures towards Chopra. Sharing the clip on Twitter, Mendonsa had written, “Ladiesssss..Yes I got the hard hitting, deep answers too but..Take the first 4 secs before the cam moves to the zoom call to guess who we are dancing."

Calling their act ‘disgusting,’ ‘cheap’ Indians on Twitter didn’t mince their words on calling out their inappropriate behaviour. Some Twitter users even apologised on behalf of the RJs, pointing out how the dance made Chopra feel ‘awkward’ and somehow disrespected someone of his stature. One user also asked the RJs to ‘stop romanticising male players’ adding that they were ‘much more than a sexual object.’

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first published:September 04, 2021, 12:59 IST