Filmmaker and TV show host Karan Johar has apologised for the inappropriate comments made in an episode of his talk show, Koffee With Karan, featuring cricketers Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul.
Pandya and Rahul were widely criticised for their remarks and have been provisionally suspended by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), pending an inquiry.
“I’m not justifying the conversation that happened on the episode. I’m saying that perhaps things were said that may have crossed boundaries and I apologise because it was my platform where it happened,” Johar told ET Now.
The filmmaker, who is in Davos for the World Economic Forum, said the boys have “paid the price” for what happened on the episode.
“I haven’t spoken about it really... I feel very responsible because it was my show and my platform. I invited them as guests and so the ramifications and repercussions of the show are my responsibility.
“I have had so many sleepless nights, just wondering about how I can undo this damage. Who is going to listen to me? It has now gone into a zone that is beyond my control,” said Johar.
“I don’t defend myself when I say this, the questions I asked the two boys are the questions I ask everyone, including women. When Deepika (Padukone) and Alia (Bhatt) were on the show, I asked them those questions.
“I have no control over the answers that come my way. And post the show, I have a control room of about 16-17 girls. The show Koffee with Karan is run entirely by women. I’m the only man there. None of them came up (with issues).”
According to Johar, some of them thought Pandya was wild, “crazy or cracked” and some said he was funny too.
“No one came and told me that ‘Karan, this is was inappropriate’,” he added.
Johar said he regretted the flak that Rahul and Pandya received after the show.
“And then there was talk about me actually enjoying the TRP. I don’t care about the TRPs. This is a spin-off... It’s not my career, it’s theirs. I don’t care about the ratings. People don’t understand that an English language show is never dependent on its ratings. We are nowhere in the radar of ratings.
“It was not ratings, it was meant to be my show and I want to say it is frivolous. It is sometimes completely borderline ridiculous, irreverent, candid and stops making sense... That’s the show,” he added.