Actor Randeep Hooda was removed as the ambassador of Convention for the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS), United Nation’s environmental treaty, after a video of him making an insensitive “joke” on Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati went viral.
Hooda was criticised after a nine-year-old video of him making a “joke”, which was dubbed on social media as “casteist and sexist”, went viral online. The 43-second-clip from an event resurfaced after a social media user shared it on her Twitter page.
In a statement posted on its website, CMS said the organisation finds the comments in the video to be “offensive” and stated that Hooda will no longer serve as their ambassador. It added that the organisation was unaware of the 2012 video at the time Hooda was appointed as a CMS ambassador for Migratory Species in February 2020.
The actor was made the ambassador along with Australian explorer and environmentalist Sacha Dench and British biologist Ian Redmond OBE and was expected to serve his duties till 2023.
The statement also clarified that CMS was separate from both the UN Secretariat and the UN Environment Programme and was the only entity for which Hooda served as a brand ambassador.
On Friday, #ArrestRandeepHooda was trending on the micro-blogging platform after Twitter users demanded legal action against the actor. “If this does not explain how casteist and sexist this society is, especially towards Dalit women, i don’t know what will. the ‘joke’, the audacity, the crowd. randeep hooda, top bollywood actor talking about a dalit woman, who has been the voice of the oppressed,” a user tweeted along with the video.
Actor Richa Chadha called out Hooda over his remarks and said in a tweet, “It’s a despicable ‘joke’. It’s crass, tasteless and sexist.”
Hooda, who was last seen in Salman Khan’s Radhe : Your Most Wanted Bhai, is yet to make a statement or reply to these criticisms.