A controversial tweet came back to bite Priyanka Chopra on Saturday during a tense confrontation with a woman who accused the actress of encouraging war between Pakistan and her home country of India.
Chopra, who was appointed as a UNICEF goodwill ambassador in 2016, expressed her support for the Indian Armed Forces in February amid heightened tension between the neighboring countries, which have been locked in a decadeslong conflict over the disputed region of Kashmir.
The same day India carried out airstrikes on an alleged terrorist training camp inside Pakistan in retaliation for a suicide car bombing that killed at least 40 Indian troops, the actress tweeted “Jai Hind #IndianArmedForces,” which translates to “Long live India.”
The Pakistan Air Force then said it shot down two Indian fighter jets in response, significantly escalating the current confrontation and pushing the nuclear rivals closer to war.
During an appearance at the Beautycon Festival in Los Angeles over the weekend, Chopra fielded a question from a woman, who called her a hypocrite for promoting peace, while “encouraging nuclear war against Pakistan.”
“It was kinda hard hearing you talk about humanity because, as your neighbor, a Pakistani, I know you’re a bit of a hypocrite,” the woman, who has since identified herself on social media as Ayesha Malik, said after she was given a microphone.
“You are a UNICEF ambassador for peace and you’re encouraging nuclear war against Pakistan,” she continued, referencing Chopra’s February tweet. “There’s no winner in this.”
The security team at the convention quickly took the mic away from Malik, who went onto add that she’s a longtime fan of the Bollywood star before she could finish her question.
“I hear you. Whenever you’re done venting,” a chilly Chopra responded on stage. “Got it? OK, cool.”
“I have many, many friends from Pakistan,” she continued. “I am from India, and war is not something that I am very fond of, but I am patriotic.”
The “Quantico” star did apologize if her tweet offended fans like Malik who “do love me and have loved me.”
“I think that all of us have a sort of middle ground that we all have to walk, just like you probably do as well,” Chopra concluded. “The way you came at me right now? Girl, don’t yell. We’re all here for love. Don’t yell. Don’t embarrass yourself. But we all walk that middle ground, but thank you for your enthusiasm and your question and your voice.”
After the confrontation, Malik took to Twitter to clarify her stance and explain her decision to call out Chopra, who she said “gaslit” her with the response.
She went onto knock the actress for equating speaking out about a humanitarian crisis as “venting,” sharing multiple videos of their interaction on social media.
Chopra has yet to address the confrontation, as her tweet continues to cause controversy ― an online petition seeking her removal as the UNICEF goodwill ambassador launched in March now has over 100,000 signatures.
But the Saturday response hasn’t exactly won Chopra any fans, with many online questioning her position as an advocate for human rights.