British actors Jameela Jamil and Riz Ahmed have pulled out of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation event.
The reason was that Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is slated to receive an award for the Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan campaign he launched in his country.
The campaign aims at stimulating the efforts to achieve universal sanitation coverage in India as a tribute to Mahatma Gandhi on his 150th birth anniversary.
“Jameela Jamil and Riz Ahmed are no longer participating in Goalkeepers,” the foundation reported to HuffPost India on Monday.
However, Jameela Jamil said she would “not be commenting on any of this” in response to a tweet by Polis Project’s Suchitra Vijayan asking her for details.
“As I’ve said before, when I publicly discuss world politics, especially when war is involved, I become the recipient of a multitude of death and rape threats. As a survivor, I cannot and will not endure that treatment, so I will not be commenting on any of this,” she wrote.
As I’ve said before, when I publicly discuss world politics, especially when war is involved, I become the recipient of a multitude of death and rape threats. As a survivor, I cannot and will not endure that treatment, so I will not be commenting on any of this. https://t.co/CaTNK0WnEs
— Jameela Jamil 🌈 (@jameelajamil) September 16, 2019
Riz Ahmed has not commented on the decision yet.
While many condemn the decision to award the Indian Prime Minister due to his barbaric treatment and policies towards the minorities in India, The Gates Foundation stood by its decision, saying Modi was receiving the award for “the progress India is making in improving sanitation, as part of its drive toward achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.”
South Asian academics & activists have been working tirelessly to convince @gatesfoundation to withdraw the award especially given Modi's recent actions in Kashmir & Assam.
For more info on why this award is a bad idea:
— Azad Essa (@azadessa) September 16, 2019
“Before the Swachh Bharat mission, over 500 million people in India did not have access to safe sanitation, and now, the majority do. There is still a long way to go, but the impacts of access to sanitation in India are already being realized. The Swachh Bharat Mission can serve as a model for other countries around the world that urgently need to improve access to sanitation for the world’s poorest,” said a statement made to HuffPost India.
Modi will attend the ceremony early next week during his visit to the US.
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