Days after actor Samyuktha Hegde alleged that she and her friends had faced moral policing at the hands of Congress leader Kavitha Reddy, the latter has issued an unconditional apology.
At the same time, she noted that the incident had been "blown out of proportion" and that with the public around the chaotic situation had seen many "out of context" video recordings.
The incident which took place on September 4 had seen Reddy, a Congress leader and a spokesperson for the Karnataka Congress in a heated exchange with Hegde and her friends even as several police officials and members of the public looked on. The actor had live-streamed the exchange once the altercation began. "We came here and I removed it and did my warmup. We were just exercising with hoops and this woman (referring to Kavitha Reddy) came up to us and started saying that we were being indecent for wearing a sports bra in a public place. We were just exercising by ourselves. Now the people here are saying that we consume drugs," she can be heard saying.
"Even though I did not physically assault or hit Samyuktha's friend, which was evident in the video, I still owe an unconditional apology for losing my temper, irrespective of whatever may be the provocation," Reddy said.
She notes that moral policing is something that she has always opposed, adding that it was "unthinkable" that she would make such "regressive comments".
"With the public around, there was a lot of arguments, heated exchanges and out of context video recordings. The ugly incident should not have happened. Nor should it be made political or seen as moral policing. As a responsible citizen and a progressive woman, I'm issuing an unconditional apology to everyone at the location of the incident," she added.
While there has been no response from Hegde yet, she had earlier in the day taken to Twitter to reveal that she had filed an FIR over the incident.
"It is high time that society stops harassing women for what we wear, where we go and what we do. I have filed an FIR and I have full faith that a fair investigation will be carried out. I hope for a better future and a safe space for us to just be us," she tweeted on Sunday afternoon.