Priyanka Chopra in a new interview has addressed the controversy that erupted after a Pakistani woman accused her of promoting war during an event in Los Angeles in August. The actor spoke about the incident, and the ensuing debate, in an interview to Daily Beast.
She said, “I feel like this is not an opportune moment to talk about it. Second of all, it was unfortunate what happened, and third of all, I never have, never was, and never will be pro-war and that is in my statements itself. My work for all of these years is a testament to that, and I don’t feel I need to keep regurgitating it.”
Jai Hind #IndianArmedForces ???????? ????????— PRIYANKA (@priyankachopra) February 26, 2019
At Beautycon in LA, a woman in the audience had confronted Priyanka about a tweet in which she had praised the Indian armed forces, during a particularly turbulent time between India and Pakistan. “You are United Nations Goodwill ambassador for peace and you are encouraging nuclear war in Pakistan. There is no way you are in this ...As a Pakistani, millions of people, like ,me, have supported you in your business,” the woman was heard saying in the video, which went viral. Priyanka’s response, in which she said to the woman, ‘”Girl, don’t yell”, was criticised.
“I feel that influence is an extremely important power, and it has a lot of responsibility that comes with it,” she added. “It doesn’t have the responsibility that heads of states might have, because obviously we are not lawmakers or we cannot change those things, but we can influence, and I have always hoped to be able to use my influence in terms of philanthropy, and creativity in the arts, and to be able to, if I have opinions as a citizen, be able to speak about my opinions, and be able to give people perspective that they might not have seen because of my travels.”
About calls to remove her as a UN ambassador, Priyanka said, “Being an ambassador is a couple of things that I don’t think people understand. What do celebrities do? What is their real job when it comes to philanthropy? We are a means to an end. We are not an end. We are not something that can change too much, but we go to places of crisis, we take time from our lives, and we volunteer that time so we can bring attention to places of crisis and have all you guys write about it, and as soon as you guys write about it, because we have gone there, we are highlighting the voices of those children that didn’t probably get the opportunity to have their voices magnified as much as they do when I tell their story. So that is the job of an ambassador: to use your position to magnify the voices of people that might not have it. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have opinions, because we are human. Also we are not in politics, so we are not political. But at the same time, it’s very important to stand for peace and to stand for integrity and to stand for humanity.”
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