Wonder woman actress deletes Instastory wrongly crediting Indian activist as fighting for gender equality

The activist has responded by saying that she is keen to welcome Gal Gadot to India.

Matthias Ang | January 06, 2021, 06:39 PM

The Israeli actress of the Wonder Woman films, Gal Gadot, has deleted an Instastory which mistakenly hailed an 82-year-old Indian activist as fighting for gender equality, Vice News and The Hindu reported.

The activist, Bilkis Bano, had risen to prominence during a protest from the end of 2019 to early 2020 in New Delhi, India, against a controversial Indian law known as the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), which was slammed as unconstitutional and discriminatory on religious grounds.

What did Gadot say?

In her Instastory which featured an image of Bilkis, Gadot had written,"The 82-year-old activist fighting for women's equality in India showed me it's never too late to fight for what you believe in."

Source: Gal Gadot Instagram

While the Instastory has been deleted, the image of Bilkis can still be seen in an Instagram post by Gadot, which she posted with the caption:

"Saying farewell to 2020, with all my love to #MyPersonalWonderWomen ❤

Some are those closest to me - my family, my friends - some are inspiring women I’ve loved discovering, and some are exceptional women I hope to meet in the future.

Together, we can do wonders!

Share your own wonder women with me ❤️"

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Gal Gadot (@gal_gadot)

How did Bilkis react?

The mistake does not appear to have generated any ill-will however.

In response to Gadot's mention, Bilkis said that she would be keen to welcome Gadot if she visited India.

In a video uploaded by the The Logical Indian, Bilkis said:

"When I saw Gal Gadot's picture, I realised she looks like my daughter. I wish her a Happy New Year.

Whenever you visit India, I will cook Kushtaba (Kashmiri dish) for you. I will also take you to visit Agra's Taj Mahal."

So what is the CAA that Bilkis was protesting against?

On Dec. 12, 2019, India's parliament passed the CAA, which allows "persecuted" minorities — that is, specifically Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, Jains, Parsis and Christians — from the countries of Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh to claim citizenship in India.

Under the law, members of such communities will only have to live or work in India for six years to be eligible for citizenship by naturalisation, according to the BBC.

Prior to the law's passing, the requirement was 11 years of having lived or worked for the federal government.

However, the law makes no reference to Muslims.

India's opposition parties have criticised the law as discriminatory, and an attempt by the country's ruling Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to polarise the country through the stoking of communal tensions.

The law has also been criticised by others as undermining India's secular constitution because it enshrines religious discrimination into law.

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Top image collage via Gal Gadot Facebook and Instagram