On 26 February, the actor posted a tweet saying “Jai Hind”, meaning “victory to India”.
The post also included the hashtag #IndianArmedForces.
The tweet followed a series of airstrikes by India that triggered a retaliatory response from Pakistan, and resulted in an escalation in hostilities between the two nuclear-armed countries over the disputed region of Kashmir.
On Saturday, the former Miss World was confronted by audience member Ayesha Malik at BeautyCon in Los Angeles about the message.
As Chopra was taking questions at the event, Malik approached the microphone and called the Bollywood star a hypocrite for “encouraging nuclear war against Pakistan” while serving as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador.“So it was kind of hard hearing you talk about humanity, because as your neighbour, a Pakistani, I know you’re a bit of a hypocrite,” Malik can be heard saying in a video of the incident posted on Twitter, which has since received more than 71,000 likes.
“You are a UNICEF ambassador for peace and you’re encouraging nuclear war against Pakistan. There’s no winner in this,” Malik continued. The microphone was taken away from Malik towards the end of her statement.
Chopra defender herself against the criticism, stating that while war is not something she is “fond of” she is “patriotic”.
“Whenever you’re done venting … got it, done? Okay, cool,” the actor said, before launching into her response.
“I’m sorry if I hurt sentiments to people who do love me and have loved me, but I think that all of us have a sort of middle ground that we all have to walk, just like you probably do as well,” Chopra said.
“The way you came at me right now? Girl, don’t yell.
“We’re all here for love. Don’t yell. Don’t embarrass yourself. But we all walk that middle ground, but thank you for your enthusiasm and your question and your voice.”
Malik later addressed the incident on Twitter, accusing Chopra of ignoring her question and making her look like “the bad guy”.
“It took me back to when I couldn’t reach my family because of the blackouts and how scared/helpless I was,” Malik wrote.
“She gaslit me and turned the narrative around on me being the ‘bad guy’ — as a UN ambassador this was so irresponsible.
“Sorry, didn’t realise that speaking on a humanitarian crisis was ‘venting’.”
Last week, Imran Khan, the prime minister of Pakistan, warned that war could break out with India after its neighbour announced plans to revoke the semi-autonomous status of the disputed region of Kashmir.
The head of Pakistan’s army, General Qamar Javed Bajwa, also vowed his forces will “go to any extent” to support the people of Kashmir.
“The Pakistan army firmly stands by the Kashmiris in their just struggle to the very end,” he said.
“We are prepared and shall go to any extent to fulfil our obligations in this regard.”
Pakistan, which claims Kashmir as its own territory, and India have previously fought two wars over the Himalayan region.