Recently, a video of a female foreigner being ‘rampaged’ by several Indian men over selfies in Mumbai had gone viral. The video raised several concerns about the safety of female tourists in India, which was recently named the most dangerous country for women.
In the video, the tourist can be seen being hassled by a group of men as she smilingly obliges to their requests for a selfie. People started outraging against the video with captions such as “Watch how Indians treat a blonde Caucasian in Mumbai”, asserting that Indian men have no concept of personal space.
However, now it seems that the video has kind of been taken out of context, as the tourist featured in the video took to Facebook to detail what actually happened.
Clarifying the facts of the video, Celia Voivodich stated that the video was filmed last year when she was in Mumbai on a trip. She wrote, “This video was in fact choreographed. (NOT STAGED – people please stop making things up that was not said) Yes, I noticed I was getting a lot of attention in this particular spot in Mumbai, but the men who approached me did naturally, they’re not actors.” After noticing how people were approaching her for selfies, Celia went back to the same spot to shoot a video for “blogging content”.
To the people who advised her to stay away from local Indian men, Celia said, “I am not naive to let men talk to men, and take my picture. I fully understand the dangers of certain choices being made in India, but that really does go for EVERY other country, even your own.”
She also noted that, as a tourist, if she can take pictures of locals, why should she deny them a photo? She added, “I’m sorry if anyone thinks it’s stupid or I disrespected myself. I can see how people could form this opinion, however, I did not feel disrespected at all. If you can see the light-hearted humour in this video, then thank you, we are on the same page!”
Here is her Facebook post: