International tennis star and all-round baller Sania Mirza shut down veteran journalist Rajdeep Sardesai on live Indian television when he asked her a sexist question he admitted he would not have asked a sportsperson of her opposite gender.
The interview was a follow-up with Mirza after she released her autobiography Ace Against Odds (that Shah Rukh Khan unveiled) on July 13 in Hyderabad, India.
It was being aired live on India Today TV.
Sardesai began the 10-minute interview by asking Mirza about her career and her titles.
However, things took an odd turn towards the end when the TV anchor inquired Mirza about her plans for motherhood and “settling down”.
“Amidst all the celebrityhood, when is Sania going to settle down? Is it going to be in Dubai? Is it going to be in another country? What about motherhood? Building a family? I don’t see that in the book. It seems like you don’t want to retire yet to settle down.”
“You don’t think I’m settled? You sound disappointed I’m not choosing motherhood over being number one in the world at this point of time,” she said.
“But I’ll answer your question anyway. That’s the question I face all the time as a woman, that all women have to face – the first is marriage and then it’s motherhood,” Mirza explained to Sardesai.
“Unfortunately that’s when we’re settled, and no matter how many Wimbledons we win or number ones in the world we become, we don’t become settled,” she added.
Sardesai quickly realized the sexism
The TV Anchor apologized immediately and admitted he would not have asked the same question to her male counterpart.
“I must apologise,” he said. “I think I phrased that question very badly. I promise you’re right; I wouldn’t have asked that question to a male athlete,” Sardesai said, correcting his error in judgment on live television.
“I’m so glad. You’re the first journalist to apologize to me on national television,” the sports star told a regretful Sardesai.
“I hope that a few years from now, a girl, when she is 29, isn’t asked the question about when she’s going to have a child when she is number one in the world,” Mirza said as the feminist in her shined. – SAMAA