New Delhi: Hotstar has removed an episode of Koffee with Karan that featured Indian cricketers KL Rahul and Hardik Pandya after remarks made by the latter ‘hurt the sentiments’ of many of its viewers, the Indian video streaming service said. Vinod Rai, the chairman of the Committee of Administrators (CoA) that oversees such matters, suggested a two-match ban but the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is yet to act on his recommendation.
“Certain remarks/comments made by the guests on episode 12 of Koffee with Karan [season 6] may hurt the sentiments of our users/viewers,” the Star India-owned Hotstar said in a tweet, replying to a user query about the now-missing episode.
“As a responsible platform, we have removed the episode from Hotstar with immediate effect.”
Pandya’s statements have resulted in a question mark over his place in the team for the upcoming ODI series against Australia, with the legal team of the BCC asking for the ‘immediate appointment’ of an ombudsman as the cricket board does not have one presently.
“At a party, my parents asked me, ‘Acha tera wala kaun sa hai [Which women are yours]? I said, ‘Yeh, yeh, yeh (This, this, and this one),” Pandya told Johar. “And they were like, ‘Waah, proud of you beta’.” Later, when Johar asked him why he doesn’t ask for the names of women at nightclubs since he has trouble remembering them, Pandya replied: “I like to watch and observe how they move. I’m little from the black side so I need to see how they move.”
When Johar asked them how Indian players decide if they happen to hit on the same woman, Pandya said: “[It’s] up to the woman. Nahi nahi, aisa kuch nahi hai. Talent pe hota hai. Jisko mila, woh leke jao (No no, it’s nothing like that. It’s all about talent. Whoever gets them, takes them).”
Pandya later posted an apology on Twitter: “After reflecting on my comments on Koffee with Karan, I would like to apologise to everyone concerned who [sic] I may have hurt in any way. Honestly, I got a bit carried away with the nature of the show. In no way did I mean to disrespect or hurt anyone’s sentiments. Respect.”
Hotstar has also erased mentions of the episode from its social media handles of Star World, the channel on which the show airs on TV.