ENTERTAINMENT
10/09/2018 12:20 BST | Updated 10/09/2018 12:34 BST

'Celebrity Big Brother': Hardeep Singh Kohli Clarifies Sally Morgan 'Borderline Racist' Comment

The show was at the centre of yet more controversy over the weekend.

‘Celebrity Big Brother’ evictee Hardeep Singh Kohli has addressed his explained his recent row with Sally Morgan, in which he branded her of “borderline racism”.

Prior to his eviction, Hardeep was unimpressed when Sally suggested he put talcum powder on his face as part of a hospital drama-themed task, to appear ill.

Following this, it was revealed she’d already asked if they could use his turban (or, as she put it, “that thing you wear on your head”) as a bandage in the same task, prompting him to accuse the TV psychic of “borderline racism”, which she took issue with. 

Channel 5
Sally Morgan confronted Hardeep over his comment

“I have never, ever said anything racist. You implied it,” she insisted. “I’m not going mad. I’m not having it.

“And then you come back and apologise like you don’t know what you’ve done to me. It’s absolutely dreadful why are you doing it to me?

“I have not got a racist bone in my body and you’ve implied it. I can’t have it. You can’t do it, I won’t allow it.”

The rest of the housemates, including Dan Osborne and Ryan Thomas, also told Hardeep he shouldn’t have used the term “racism” while they were on the show.

Now out of the house, Hardeep spoke to broadcaster Jeremy Vine about the row, explaining his side of the story.

Channel 5
Hardeep speaks to Jeremy Vine

When Jeremy asked whether he’d been “fair” to Sally because she “wasn’t making a racist comment”, Hardeep said: “OK, so we all know [‘CBB’] is edited. Earlier that day… the idea was Nick was [playing] a burns victim, and they were going to wrap him in bandages, and she said, ’that thing you wear on your head, we can use that to wrap [Nick’s head in].

“Now, one can make an argument as to whether there was intent in that. A 67-year-old woman, who’s travelled four continents, and played to 3000 people a night, as she constantly reminded us… there’s much about her that’s fascinating and interesting and impressive [but] I reckon she knows what a turban is. You grow up in London in the 1950s and 60s, you know what a turban is.

“So there’s that, and I’m trying to explain to her that’s not a respectful thing to [say], I don’t go into the whole story, and maybe I should have, that when I was a child I was chased down the street with people saying, ‘how did you hurt your head? Is that why it’s wrapped up?’.”

Hardeep added: “And that was the second or third time she’d mentioned the talc thing. Now, we talk about overreaction, I overreacted. Surprise, surprise, right? I think I should have handled it... don’t judge one’s actions by those around you, judge it by your own set of principles. I let that slip.

“But I didn’t call her racist, I said she was borderline racist… but the problem is you’re in a house where people don’t want stories that are more than a minute and a half long. And they don’t want any conversation. Ryan, bless him, I’m very fond of him, but he said four times ‘racism is irrelevant’.

Channel 5
Hardeep was in the 'CBB' bedroom when the incident occurred

Following his eviction over the weekend, Hardeep shared his inside take on the Roxanne Pallett “punch” row, branding what occurred between the actress and Ryan an “injustice”, though he did say he wished her the best.

He said: “Truth and facts are essential to everything we do. When you start creating truth and embellishing facts… I think there’s no coming back from that.”

‘Jeremy Vine’ airs every weekday from 9.15am on Channel 5.

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