Actor Siddharth on Tuesday apologised to badminton player Saina Nehwal two days after making a seemingly sexual slur at her.

“You will always be my Champion,” Siddharth said to Nehwal in a letter posted on Twitter. He wrote the letter after facing a major backlash on social media for his comments.

Nehwal, who joined the Bharatiya Janata Party last year, had on January 5 expressed concern about Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s convoy being stuck for several minutes on a flyover in Punjab.

In her tweet, Nehwal had said: “No nation can claim itself to be safe if the security of its own PM gets compromised. I condemn, in the strongest words possible, the cowardly attack on PM Modi by anarchists.”

Siddharth posted the tweet in response to her statement.

On Tuesday, the actor said that while he may disagree with Nehwal on many things, his tone and use of words were not justified. “As for the joke...If a joke needs to be explained, then it wasn’t a very good joke to begin with,” he added. “Sorry about a joke that didn’t land.”

Siddharth, however, claimed that he had not posted the tweet with any malicious intent. “I am a staunch feminist ally and I assure you there was no gender implied in my tweet and certainly no intent to attack you as a woman,” he said.

On Wednesday, Nehwal said that she was happy that the actor has apologised, PTI reported. “I was surprised to see myself trending on Twitter that day,” the badminton champion added. “I haven’t spoken to him but I am happy that he apologised.”

Nehwal said that he should not target a woman in such a manner. “But it’s okay, I am not bothered about it,” she said. “I am happy in my space and god bless him.”

On Monday, the National Commission for Women said it has written to Twitter India to block the actor’s account over his tweet.

“This man needs a lesson or two,” the panel’s chairperson Rekha Sharma said in a tweet. “Twitter India why this person’s account still exists? Taking it up with concerned police.”

The National Commission for Women on Tuesday also took cognisance of another instance in which Siddharth allegedly made derogatory remarks against a news anchor. Sharma wrote to the Tamil Nadu director general of police seeking action against the actor.