Ananya and Ishaan in Beyonce Sharma Jayegi. (courtesy: YouTube )
- The song received major flak on social media
- “We want to apologise to anyone offended,” said director Maqbool Khan
- “Our idea was to simply use a synonym to ‘girl’,” said the lyricist
Ever since the song Beyonce Sharma Jayegi from the film Khaali Peeli, featuring Ishaan Khatter and Ananya Panday released, it has snowballed into controversy. The use of the term “goriya” – describing a fair skinned woman – has been denounced online as racially insensitive; the invoking of pop icon Beyonce complicated matters. Khaali Peeli director Maqbool Khan has now addressed the outrage caused by the song, offering an apology for causing offence. The word “goriya” is not to be taken literally, he said, and there was no intention of disrespecting Beyonce. During an interaction with Hindustan Times, the filmmaker apologised and said, “First, without any hesitation or excuses we want to apologise to anyone offended. We assure you that the lyric in question was never intended racially.” Defending his stance on the choice of the word, Mr Khan added, “In fact, the term ‘goriya‘ has been so often and traditionally used in Indian songs to address a girl, that it didn’t occur to any of us to interpret it in the literal manner.”
Speaking of the comparison with Beyonce facet, Maqbool Khan said the song wasn’t meant to disrespect the icon. “The comparison with Beyonce is simply meant to be a street-smart guy flattering a girl who is trying to impress that her dancing/performance is worth comparing to even Beyonce who we all see as the final word, the epitome of talent, beauty, performance, style and attitude. We are all huge fans, and there was never any question of disrespect,” HT quoted him as saying.”
Lyricist Kumaar said that the term in question has was used as a synonym for woman.”‘Goriya‘ as a word has been used in many Hindi songs earlier. Our idea was to simply use a synonym to ‘girl’. There is no derogation intended – we revere beauty of global celebrity Beyoncé and don’t mean to hurt any of her fans.”
Beyonce Sharma Jayegi has been composed by Vishal and Shekhar and it has been sung by Nakash Aziz and Neeti Mohan.