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My name is Anna, I’m NOT a transgender, says the girl in Akshay Kumar’s ‘Gentleman’ video

The woman featured in Akshay Kumar’s promotional video for A Gentleman is upset, claims people are calling her nasty names like ‘she man’. She adds that the video does not mock any community, including LGBTQ.

bollywood Updated: Aug 25, 2017 13:43 IST
Monika Rawal Kukreja
Monika Rawal Kukreja
Hindustan Times
Akshay Kumar,Sidharth Malhotra,A Gentleman
Actor Akshay Kumar wrote, “Smart.Suave.Thorough. Watch out for @s1dofficial in and as #AGentleman with the lovely @jacquelinef143 at a theatre near you.”

When actor Akshay Kumar posted a hilarious video on Instagram promoting Sidharth Malhotra’s film, A Gentleman, little did he know that it would land him in trouble. The video shows Akshay standing outside a washroom for men, and the moment a sari-clad woman comes out and says, “Be a gentleman Akki… give me side.” The actor looks all puzzled and reacts, “Ye log bhi?”

Ever since the video went viral, several reports did the rounds accusing Akshay of mocking transgender and being insensitive towards the LGBTQ community.

However, on contacting the woman featured in Akki’s video, we learned that she is an assistant choreographer named Anna from Mumbai, who has been working with choreographer Ganesh Acharya for seven years. Also, she is a member of the dance crew for Akshay’s next film, Gold, currently being shot in London.

In an exclusive interview with HT, sounding extremely upset, she tells us, “I am a girl. I am not a transgender. I’ve been hearing all sorts of nasty things and I don’t care who has written what but this is disgusting. My friends and crew are teasing me and telling me that ‘tujhe bahar log chakka chakka bol rahe hain’. After these [false] reports, people are calling me a she man and I won’t accept it.”

I have to get married someday and for someone who doesn’t know me, they will think that I am a she man.

Anna, who is trying to pursue a career in choreography and venture into acting too, says such rumours can ruin her personal and professional life. “It’s a big thing for me. Koi bhi mere bare mein kya sochega. It’s a matter of my life. I have to get married someday and for someone who doesn’t know me, they will think that I am a she man.”

Rubbishing reports that Akshay was in any way trying to make fun of the transgender community, Anna defends him saying, “There was nothing wrong —neither the intention nor the video. If anybody, who is sensible, will watch the video will say ladki kya kar rahi hai men’s toilet mein. It’s only someone’s filthy mind, who has given the video this sad twist. [Also] If I felt that he was mocking any community, I would have been a fool to do that in the first place.”

She further clarifies that the video was made purely for fun. “It was a normal shout-out for his [Akshay] friend’s movie and he wanted to make it in a funny way. Master Ji [Ganesh] ne bola, shoot karne ka hai and since we are all working together, I happily agreed. Ajeeb aur funny way mein banana tha unko, kuch hatke karna tha apne dost ke liye. Why are people making an issue out of it?”

Asked if she knew what the video was all about and that she had to come out of the gent’s washroom, she promptly replies, “Mujhe pure tareeke se pata tha ki theme kya hai. It was a random thing when Akshay sir told me ki tu men’s toilet se bahar aa, and uss par gentleman likha tha, that’s why we used that particular toilet.”

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First Published: Aug 25, 2017 13:43 IST