A day following a controversy surrounding his alleged misconduct with a female journalist in Kerala, Malayalam actor and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Suresh Gopi issued an apology on Saturday, October 28. He stated that he had only shown “affection” towards her.
In the meantime, the female journalist released a statement on Facebook, indicating her intention to pursue legal action against the actor.
The incident unfolded when a video surfaced online on October 27, depicting Gopi placing his hand on the journalist’s shoulder while engaging with the media in Kozhikode district. This took place as the journalist asked a question about the BJP’s track record in securing Lok Sabha seats in Kerala.
Gopi responded with, “Let me give it a try, dear. Let us wait,” while reportedly placing his hand on her shoulder. The video showed the journalist removing his hand from her shoulder twice.
Following the video’s viral spread on social media, numerous associations, including the Kerala Union of Working Journalists (KUWJ) and the Network of Women in Media, decried Gopi’s alleged misconduct towards the journalist.
The KUWJ regarded Gopi’s actions as an “insult” to all working women and demanded an unconditional apology, vowing to file a complaint with the Women’s Commission and take legal action against him.
Gopi tendered his apology through a Facebook post, asserting that he had never been disrespectful to anyone in his life, on or off the stage.
He apologized to the journalist “if she had suffered any mental distress due to my behavior” and expressed regret. However, the journalist, in her statement, emphasized that Gopi’s apology felt more like an explanation and suggested that he should acknowledge his inappropriate behavior, stating that he touched her without her consent.