The Bachelorette 2021 contestant Ritu Chhina’ s sister Ria has dragged the show’s producers for barely giving her any screen time.
In a TikTok posted shortly after her sis’ elimination, Ria said that she was “disappointed” to see the show fail to actually showcase her sister and her proud culture as a queer Indian woman.
“The reason my sister wanted to go onto the show was to represent the Indian community, show our culture, and show other Indian queers that it is okay to be queer,” she said.
“And she got to show none of it. She literally got to show none of it.
“Why would you have a POC on the show, especially an Indian woman or of any culture, and not let them show the culture? That’s what irks me.”
In the second episode of the show, Ritu wore a gorgeous traditional Indian salwar kameez to the cocktail party. Despite the show’s official Instagram page sharing a photo of it, it was barely shown on-screen.
she got zero screen time this episode, so here’s an appreciation tweet for ritu’s beautiful salwar kameez (a traditional Indian outfit) which she wore to the cocktail party
— Isha Bassi (@Isha_Bassi) October 21, 2021
why has ritu not gotten any screen time? #BacheloretteAU
— teresa (@augustfallin) October 27, 2021
“She was literally in the background the whole time,” Ria added.
“You can’t spare five minutes to show a bit of culture? To actually show you’re being diverse?
“You’re just putting them in the background? Says a lot about what their whole motive was for having this edition of the show.”
Speaking with Refinery29 Australia, Ritu Chhina appears to have felt a slightly similar way here. While she admitted that contestants “were able to speak to the crew at any point about concerns and even had an assigned minder”, at times she felt like the show’s token queer South Asian woman.
“I wouldn’t say I had any major concerns around racism but as to be expected, I did feel tokenised purely because I was one of the only few queer POC actually involved with the show,” she told the outlet.
“Sharing the parts of myself that are more Indian-centric seemed to become a focus but I didn’t initially see this as a concern.”
In a statement to the outlet, a Network 10 spokesperson said: “Eligible contestants on all Network 10 shows are considered regardless of race or background. Network 10 takes its commitment to diversity seriously and we cast as broadly as possible across our entire slate.”
Ritu Chhina was sadly booted from The Bachelorette last Wednesday night. In that same week, four other gals were eliminated and replaced by four intruders.
You can catch the rest of Brooke Blurton‘s season on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 7:30pm on Channel Ten or TenPlay.