Roadies season 1 director says show originally aimed at ‘nation building’, slams makers for ‘abusive anchors’
The director of the first season of the popular reality show Roadies, Nivedith Alva has slammed the current version of the show, saying that bad language, “abusive anchors” and violence were never a part of the show. Nivedith was the director of the first season of the show in 2003.
Nivedith wrote in a series of tweets, “The MTV Roadies format was created by my brother Nikhil Alva @njalva and was meant to be a show that inspired & united the youth of India to do good and get involved with nation building. It sickens me to see what has been done to the Roadies format over time. Backstabbing, bad language, abusive anchors, violence and in-your-face-sexuality were never a part of the format.”
“The show has degenerated over time to the point where it is an embarrassment to brand MTV & to any advertiser associated with it. In the end,these young participants have to go back into the real world. It is worth considering the long term damage being done to them,for ratings,” he added.
The tweets come just days after Roadies Revolution mentor Neha Dhupia was trolled massively for her comment that having five boyfriends at a time is a woman’s “choice”. The trolls labelled her as a fake feminist when she blasted a man auditioning for the show, who said that he slapped his girlfriend for cheating on him. She said that it was the woman’s “choice” to be with five men at the same time, and that he had no right to raise his hand on her.
Kashish Thakur Pundir, the winner of an earlier season of Roadies, defended Neha by sharing an old video where the actor is seen lashing out at a female contestant named Iram Khan for raising her hand on him. “You have no right, no matter what happens, to use your hand,” Neha shouts in the video as she refuses to listen to any apologies from Iram.
“Nobody, whether you are a man or woman, has a right to hit another person. No matter what happens. This is not being empowered. Using your hand on a man just because you know that a man can’t slap you back is not empowerment,” Neha adds.
Responding to the trolling, Neha said in a statement issued on social media, “Roadies is a show that I have been a part of for five years and enjoyed every bit of it. It takes me all over India and gives me the opportunity to team up with absolute rock stars from all parts of the country. What I do not like or accept is what is happening for more than two weeks now! Recently during one of the episodes that aired, I took a stand against violence. A guy talked about his partner who cheated on him (allegedly) and in retaliation, he hit her by his own admission. What the girl did is a choice she made which is a moral choice regardless of someone, man or woman... adultery is a moral choice. Cheating is not something I stand for, and it is unfortunate that I have been misrepresented for the same... but what I do stand for is women’s safety.”
She also revealed her family was attacked by the troll army. “What a man or a woman does in a relationship is their choice and moral choices are always ambiguous. But no matter what they are, they cannot lead to physical abuse. I stand by the fact that NO MATTER WHAT ... physical abuse or assault is not acceptable. Obviously, a man’s physical strength is a lot more than girls and gender-based violence against women is a huge problem in our country and across the world... I urge people, whether a man or woman, to educate themselves about domestic violence... If you’re a victim of abuse, please stand up for yourself. You are not alone,” she said.
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