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Did Prakash Raj insult Chandrayaan-3 mission? The actor disagrees, claims it was a nod to 'Kerala Chaiwala'

Earlier this week, Prakash Raj tweeted a caricature of a man in a lungi and shirt serving tweet in reference to India's latest moon mission Chandrayaan-3, triggering a wave of criticism. 

Did Prakash Raj insult Chandrayaan-3 mission? The actor disagrees, claims it was a nod to 'Kerala Chaiwala'
Prakash Raj in a still from Varaal

Last Updated: 09.18 AM, Aug 23, 2023

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Actor Prakash Raj has found himself in the eye of a raging storm following a tweet on India's moon mission, Chandrayaan-3. He posted a sarcastic post on the mission, which he claims was meant to be a "joke." However, it has sparked a massive outrage as many have accused him of being "insensitive and insulting." 

A day after being subjected to non-stop trolling, Prakash Raj posted a response clarifying the rationale behind his controversial tweet. He wrote, "Hate sees only Hate.. i was referring to a joke of #Armstrong times .. celebrating our kerala Chaiwala .. which Chaiwala did the TROLLS see ?? .. if you dont get a joke then the joke is on you .. GROW UP(sic)." 

Earlier this week, Prakash tweeted a caricature of a man in a lungi and shirt, pouring tea from one cup to another to cool the temperature. Many Malayalis have also come out in support of Prakash, citing a long-running joke as the inspiration for the controversial tweet. 

The popular joke centres on astronauts Neil Armstrong Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin, the first persons to walk on the moon, were shocked to find a Malayali running a tea shop on the moon. It was supposed to highlight the widespread presence of the Malayali diaspora across the world. And as India's moon mission came closer to landing, Prakash tweeted, “BREAKING NEWS:- First picture coming from the Moon by #VikramLander Wowww #justasking.”

However, his tweet triggered strong reactions from various quarters, with people taking offence and labelling it as an expression of "hatred." Prakash has subsequently shared various sources to elaborate on the historical context of the joke that served as his tweet's inspiration.

A police complaint has been filed against Prakash and the Karnataka cops are investigating into the matter. 

Besides his onscreen roles, Prakash has become a firebrand politician and he's popular for his staunch criticism of the ruling BJP-led government. 

On the career front, Prakash had four big releases this year so far, including Varisu, Waltair Veerayya, Rangamarthanda and Ponniyin Selvan: II. He will next be seen in Tollywood superstar Pawan Kalyan's OG. 

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