Shrey Bhargava

In May, actor Shrey Bhargava, 21, shared on Facebook his experience auditioning for the latest Ah Boys To Men, where he was told to exaggerate an Indian accent and “make it funny”. His post pointed to the proliferation of racial stereotyping and caricaturing in Singaporean cultural media and the need for more nuanced representation of minority groups. The viral post stirred discussions on racial diversity and an interrogation of Singapore’s long-held belief in its “racially harmonious society”. Bhargava received lots of support and sympathy, but also a string of comments that ranged in intensity from “Stop stirring racial issues” to “You should be sent to jail for causing racial dispute.” So threatened were some members of the public that Shrey was even reported to the police.

 

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