Bollywood actor Parineeti Chopra has officially been named the brand ambassador of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s prestigious Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao campaign in her home state Haryana, following a controversy over her appointment.
The announcement was made on Tuesday evening at the launch of the campaign in Gurgaon by Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar.
Health minister Anil Vij, whose department is one of the key departments for the implementation of the programme, had claimed that he had not been kept in the loop about the appointment. This morning, he reportedly said he had not been invited for the programme.
“I don’t know who is organising this function, so how can I go there and attend it? I won’t even go to God’s place without an invite,” news agency Press Trust of India quoted the minister as saying.
Ms Chopra told media that it was a matter of “miscommunication”. “There was no displeasure about my being appointed. It was just that he didn’t know at that point… because the decision was made late at night and it was announced before everybody could be brought into the loop.”
The actor also said she had not accepted any payment for the role she would be playing. “I wouldn’t dare to ask for money for such a cause. I will not ask for money for anything I do for public awareness,” she told media.
Trouble had broken out on July 16, hours after a state government spokesman said the 26-year-old actor had been chosen for the campaign, as she hailed from Ambala.
Mr Vij, who had been seen as publicly taking on the Chief Minister on several occasions, tweeted that he was in the dark about it:
In January, the government had launched the Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao (Save the girl child, educate her) campaign in a big way.
The campaign — meant to stop female foeticide and help nurture the girl child – was flagged off in Haryana, the state notorious for the skewed ratio between male and female children at birth.