Veteran actor Chalapathi Rao was hit by a tsunami of criticism from all quarters for his sexist remarks on women in the last couple of days. With the entire Telugu film industry condemning him unanimously, the actor was left with no other choice but apologise. The incident occurred on Sunday evening, when the cast and crew of Naga Chaitanya, Rakul Preet starrer Rarandoi Veduka Choodham were at the pre-release event of the film in Hyderabad.
Chalapathi Rao, who has been acting in Telugu films since mid 60s, was one of the guests at the event. Taking a cue from one of the dialogues from the film – ‘Adavallu Manasanthiki Hanikaram‘ (Women are injurious to mental peace) – when an anchor asked Chalapathi Rao his take on it, he remarked, “I don’t know if they are injurious to mental peace, but they are useful only in bed.” The video clip of Chalapathi Rao’s remarks went viral on Monday and it led several people on social media condemning him.
The senior actor has been booked under section 354 a (IV), 509 IPC at Saroor Nagar Police Station for his controversial remark on women.Another Telugu actor Nagarjuna reacted to his comments and compared Chalapathi to a ‘dinosaur.’ The 57-year-old-actor took to Twitter and slammed his comments by writing, “I always respect women personally and in my films/I definitely do not agree wt Chalapati rao’s derogatory comments/dinosaurs do not exist!!” The controversy reached a crescendo by late Monday evening and it left the actor with no other choice but to apologise.
On Tuesday morning, Chalapathi Rao took to Facebook to clarify his stance on the issue and stated that he apologises to everyone for his remarks. “I’ve been in this industry for nearly 50 years now and I’ve always respected women. My wife passed away 40 years ago, but I didn’t want to marry again and I’ve been a good father to my kids. At the event, when I was asked if women are injurious to mental peace, my only objective was to defend them; however, my statement is being misconstrued by those who are always looking to read between the lines. I apologise to everyone if you were hurt by your remarks,” the actor said. Some people say that there are many other TV show likes Jabardasth and Pataas which have lot of double meaning dialogues and outraged dialogues about women, but why people doesnt respond to those kind of shows. It’s high time that the filmmakers stop using female actors just to titillate audience and start giving them more meaningful roles in the films. So men like Chalapathi just might understand women have more meaningful roles to play in the society than just being “useful in bed.”