Navya Nanda Called Out For Speaking On Gender-Equal Boardrooms When She Hasn’t Been In One

Back in 2017, Priyanka Chopra was invited to speak at an event by Penguin Random House. She was one of the speakers at their annual lecture series titled ‘Breaking The Glass Ceiling’ and her speech was indeed laud-worthy. But that’s beside the point. She, an actor, was the first woman to speak on the platform and not a female author, which would have been a better, more significant fit.

Something like this has happened again. The granddaughter of Amitabh and Jaya Bachchan and the daughter of Shweta Bachchan-Nanda, Navya Naveli Nanda recently spoke at the US Consulate on working towards building gender-equal boardrooms in India.


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The primary problem with this was pointed out by a female entrepreneur named Shruti Jahagirdar who is also a national-level volleyball player. She claimed that Navya has never worked in an organization or stepped inside a gender-inequal boardroom.

Shruti clarified that this is not about star-kid privilege, class or Navya’s economic standing in society. Instead, it is about how the wrong person was chosen to speak about a very important subject.

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Several people pointed out that a woman who has enough experience working in a professional setting that is widely dominated by men would have been a right fit instead of Navya Nanda. So many professionals come to mind – female cricketers, police officers, private investigators, CEOs, etc.

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As one person online rightly pointed out, celebrities and their families should not be made role models for social causes unless they are experienced and there is enough evidence supporting their work. For example, Tamil star Vijay Sethupathi would be a fitting candidate to speak on employment issues in the country as he has been silently helping thousands of people secure jobs. Or Prabhas’ environmental activism will be taken seriously because he has adopted forests and has made generous contributions towards the making of eco-parks.

Do you think Navya Naveli Nanda was a fitting speaker on this occasion?

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