Kareena Kapoor Khan has become the latest celebrity to jump into the nepotism debate. Ever since Kangana Ranaut called Karan Johar the flag bearer of nepotism on Koffee WIth Karan, this term has been widely discussed. Almost anywhere and everywhere Bollywood celebrities went, they were asked about their opinion on this. There were an array of opinions on the entire issue with some defending the phenomenon, some opposing it and some making no sense at all.
Of all the things which we have heard on nepotism, what Kareena recently said sort of falls in the last category. We have no idea what she was thinking when she drew comparisons between her cousin Ranbir Kapoor and Sonam Kapoor’s second cousin (yes, she said that!). Here are some real gems Kareena came up with when she was asked about nepotism:
Adding to this, Kareena said, not many star kids have achieved what their parents have. She went on to say Bollywood is the industry where survival of the fittest is important. It is hard to argue with Kareena on this but her understanding of nepotism is truly unexpected. When Kareena spoke about a businessman’s son taking over his father’s empire or a politician’s son joining politics; she confused dynasty with nepotism. The most celebrated families of India- be it Ambanis in business or Gandhis in politics, are a result of dynasty, not nepotism. The dictionary meaning of nepotism is:
The practice among those with power or influence of favouring relatives or friends, especially by giving them jobs
Just for a better understanding, Yash Johar giving his son Karan Johar the task of managing his production house Dharma Productions and giving him his directorial break is an example of the dynasty. But KJo launching Alia Bhatt and Varun Dhawan with Student Of The Year is nepotism. In a bid to defend the phenomenon, Kareena mixed two important things and hence failed miserably.
This was not it. Kareena added to the blunder when she said:
If there’s Ranbir Kapoor, there’s also Ranveer Singh who’s not from the industry. So honestly, nepotism is overrated
This example is wrong on so many levels. What Kareena quite conveniently missed in her opinion was that Ranveer was not an outsider. Ranveer’s nani (maternal grandmother) and Sonam’s dadaji (paternal grandfather) are siblings, which makes him second cousins to Kapoor’s children. Though no one can deny Ranveer’s hard work and his passion for acting, he was never an outsider. Shah Rukh Khan is an outsider who had absolutely zero connections in the industry. YRF’s casting director Shanoo Sharma spotted Ranveer Singh at a party. Now it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that no outsiders would have had access to these parties.
Star kids openly defending this phenomenon hints they don’t want to be the villain in the nepotism movie. Of course, they want people to take notice of their hard work and not see their ventures as a gift from powerful people they know. This is something which anyone can understand and it would be unfair to blame star kids for the privilege they are born with. But what Kareena has said implies she is oblivious to nepotism and doesn’t want to learn about it either.
Just in case Kareena needs a better picture, here are 3 most sane reactions of celebrities on nepotism. These people did not deny that nepotism exists and also said it is nothing wrong in it.
- Aamir Khan: I think it’s a normal human tendency to try and help people who you love and care for. It doesn’t have to be someone who is part of your family, it could be someone you care for. It’s a very natural emotion.
- Priyanka Chopra: There is nothing wrong in being born into a family that has a legacy. Outsiders don’t have a foot-in-the-door access. Star kids have an insurmountable pressure of living up to the family name.
- Ranbir Kapoor: It exists in the film industry, and I am a product of nepotism. I am here today because of my parents. My father got an opportunity because of his father. So, I believe if my children choose to be actors, I would like to give them a platform.
On the bright side, Kareena did say that the presence of Alia Bhatt and Kangana Ranaut in Bollywood proves the industry is a mix of outsiders and star kids. And this is the sane response which we expect from her. Maybe, Kareena, next time we get a more mindful response.
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