News|April 16, 2012 12:33 pm

It is very humiliating when one is detained: Irrfan

When Shah Rukh Khan was detained at the New York airport on his way to Yale University, he said “it was nice, as it always happens”. While the US customs and border protection authorities have offered “profound” apologies for this detention, India continued to fume over the incident.

Actor Irrfan, who too has been detained in the US earlier, said the experience of being interrogated by the authorities simply because of a certain surname can be “very unnerving”.

Said Irrfan,

I had been detained when I went for my Independent Spirit Award for ” Namesake”. It can be very unnerving and humiliating. There are ways of checking a person’s credentials. And most importantly, how many times around does one answer the same question about one’s name, surname, father’s name etc. The way one is interrogated is very demeaning. They ask you to come to a room where you are not allowed to talk on the phone. They don’t even tell you how much time the interrogation procedure will take. Every time I go to the US, memories of this experience are always there.

So, has incidents of racial profiling gone down with time or does he think that the Americans are more paranoid than ever before?

I think, it’s just the same.

Having been there and faced the same situation, would he like to say anything to Shah Rukh?

He is an intelligent actor and knows how to handle the situation. He doesn’t need my advice on how to handle this. I must add that I understand how unnerving it can get when one is detained. Here, I must say that the media also doesn’t need to only highlight this issue. If one has to talk, one can also speak about their foreign policy and not just highlight this.

the actor signs off.