- "My video response 2 those attacking my entry into Goa," Pooja wrote
- Pooja Bedi and her fiance Maneck Contractor recently drove to Goa
- They were criticised for travelling during the lockdown
Actress Pooja Bedi has shared a series of responses to the backlash she received after complaining about the quarantine facility in Goa, where she drove to from Mumbai with fiance Maneck Contractor recently. Ms Bedi was criticised for calling the facility and screening process as not an "acceptable way of life," describing Mr Contractor as Goan, and for travelling amid a lockdown with no good reason. In a series of social media posts, Pooja Bedi insisted on Mr Contractor's identity as a Goan and also uploaded video footage of the centre in Goa she spent a night in before being sent home (the couple have a house and business in Goa) for the mandatory two-week quarantine.
The footage Pooja Bedi tweeted shows living quarters of the sort one would find in an unstarred or single star hotel; the room is certainly rundown and not particularly clean - the bed linen is stained - it does not, however, appear to be so unsanitary that one contract the contagion from spending a night there, as Ms Bedi tweeted: "The lack of hygiene and sanitization makes it a breeding ground for viruses. People who enter Goa without corona may get it from such a badly sanitised quarantine centre."
In the comments thread, the verdict on whether the quarantine facility warrants a complaint is divided. Many responses agree that the room is dirty; others are of the opinion that anyone expecting a five-star experience amid a pandemic would do better to stay home and not travel.
There's a LOT of uproar about my driving to goa with my fiance who is goan! We went BY THE BOOK. Applied online 2 goa GOVT+ DCP mumbai/stopped at every checkpost/did covid test at GOA hospital & SPENT NIGHT in GOA QUARANTINE. Pl see video as 2 WHY I was upset about facility. 1/2. pic.twitter.com/7P3hX211jz— Pooja Bedi (@poojabeditweets) May 19, 2020
In a separate video message on Instagram, Pooja Bedi explained at length that she and Maneck Contractor had abided by the rules while traveling; she also dwelt on his "Goan" identity - Mr Contractor has documents, including an Aadhar card and passport, with an address in Goa, Pooja Bedi said, confusing being a resident of Goa with actually being Goan, something that many responses to her explanatory posts have pointed out.
"I refuse to be a soft target for embittered, jealous and fearful people," Pooja Bedi wrote on social media, "I tweeted out of concern for the safety of others but all people can focus on is that a celebrity entered Goa." She tagged Goa chief minister Pramod Sawant and health minister Vishwajit Rane.
Pooja Bedi has not revealed why she needed to travel to Goa in the first place, prompting criticism that she doesn't have a good reason - actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui, who also travelled from Mumbai to his hometown of Budhana in Uttar Pradesh, tweeted to explain that his mother had been subject to anxiety attacks recently; Mr Siddiqui's sister died some months ago.
This post from Pooja Bedi on Tuesday prompted the backlash:
Drove back with fiancee maneck to our home in #Goa . (He's goan. My home, car & business are all goa registered) The entire process of border control/ #COVID19 testing & the condition of quarantine facility was an experience that simply CANNOT become an acceptable way of life. pic.twitter.com/wNKV6MU11v— Pooja Bedi (@poojabeditweets) May 18, 2020
Pooja Bedi, daughter of actor Kabir Bedi and late dancer Protima Bedi, has appeared in films such as Jo jeeta Wohi Sikander and Vishkanya. Alaya, Ms Bedi's daughter with ex-husband Farhan Furniturewalla, is an actress too. Ms Bedi and Maneck Contractor got engaged in February last year.