Mumbai: Film personalities Mini Mathur, Shweta Tiwari and Sona Mohapatra have lambasted social media trolls for criticising actor-TV presenter Mandira Bedi over her attire and decision to perform last rites of her late husband Raj Kaushal.
Bedi’s husband, filmmaker Raj Kaushal, known for directing movies like Pyaar Mein Kabhi Kabhi and Shaadi Ka Laddoo, passed away on Wednesday following a heart attack.
His last rites were held at Shivaji Park crematorium, Dadar where close friends from the industry including actors Ronit Roy, Sameer Soni, Ashish Chowdhry, and Pyaar Mein Kabhi Kabhi actor Dino Morea were present.
However, soon after Bedi found herself at the receiving end of social media trolls, who objected to the clothes that she wore at the funeral.
The actor, who broke down multiple times during the funeral, was seen wearing a jeans with a white casual top.
Some social media users also took umbrage over the actor’s decision to perform the last rites of her husband, something which is traditionally done by men.
In a Twitter post on Saturday, actor-host-model Mini Mathur expressed her anger towards people who trolled Bedi and said she should rather be applauded for her strength.
“Makes me sick that people are having a field day trolling a grieving woman for performing last rites on her husband instead of asking a stranger or her tiny kid. Or for not having the time to dress the way THEY imagine grieving women should dress. Fools!! Applaud her strength!,” she wrote.
Tiwari shared a screenshot of a post by a digital creator that questioned the mentality of men having the right to perform rituals and the choice of attire during the funeral.
“@MandiraBedi we are with you and proud of you for expressing your love freely!,” Tiwari wrote on her Instagram Stories.
Mohapatra said she was not surprised by the criticism of Bedi as she believes “stupidity” is in abundance in society.
“That some people are still commenting on Mandira Bedi’s dress code or choice to carry out her husband Raj Kushal’s last rites shouldn’t surprise us. Stupidity is more abundant than any other element in our world after all,” she tweeted.
Actor-dancer Mukti Mohan also came out in support of Bedi and lamented how compassion and humanity is missing from society, especially amid such testing times.
“Women are half of humanity, half of humanity has remained undignified, uneducated, deprived of freedom, we’ve hampered and handicapped ourselves. We are a reflection of what is happening around us!
“And we have destroyed half of ourselves and if we are in misery then who is to be blamed? Ask yourselves next time when you face such situations daughters, sisters, wives, mothers and sons of such mothers, brothers of such sisters, when YOU are questioned when you want to grieve /express/love freely!! Thank you for being you @mandirabedi,” Mohan said.
There were some users who also supported Bedi in the aftermath of the backlash the actor received from social media trolls.
“I don’t think Mandira Bedi actively tried to break a stereotype.I think she did what a person in love & in grief might do – not caring about strangers’ opinions. She carried her dead husband’s bier coz he was her life companion, wearing jeans coz grief doesn’t care bout a dress code,” a user said.
Another Twitter user wrote, “Women are not spared trolling even in times of grief. When does the policing end? All I see in the picture is a brave woman who just lost her life partner. #MandiraBedi”
One user labelled Bedi’s critics as “sick”.
“People outraging about what Mandira Bedi wore to her husband’s last rites, you are sick. You are trying to bring down a super courageous woman, who battled tremendous grief with such grace. You are rotten souls,” the person tweeted.
Bedi and Kaushal, who got married in 1999, have two children — son Vir and daughter Tara.
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