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Business News/ Companies / Start-ups/  Unacademy uproar: Old video of educator calling tribals ‘stupid’ goes viral

Edtech platform Unacademy, which is currently facing backlash for sacking one of its teachers who appealed to students to vote for educated candidates, is now embroiled in a new controversy.

Netizens have dug out an old video of an Unacademy teacher who made an objectionable statement about the 'tribal community' and was not sacked.

In the old viral clip of 14-second, educator Siddharth Singh could be heard saying in Hindi, “Tribal log jo hote hain hamare, dimaag toh hota nahi unke paas koi, nahi unke paas koi, you know, kanooni koi kagaaz hote hai zameen zaydad ke (Tribal people are stupid. They also lack legal documents related to land and property)".

The video first surfaced in 2021and triggered outrage at that time, following which Unacademy took it down from its page. The edtech unicorn has also issued a statement expressing regret over the remarks and the “hurt the comment has caused."

“It has been brought to our notice that in a recent video created by one of our Educators Mr. Siddharth Singh, he has made discriminatory and hurtful comments against people from indigenous tribes," the statement read.

“Unacademy has deleted the original video and has penalised the Educator, in compliance with our internal Code of Conduct guidelines. Unacademy unconditionally regrets the comments made by the Educator and the hurt the comment has caused," it added.

However, a social media user said that the educator continues to be a part of Unacademy despite making a derogatory and offensive statement.


In the latest controversy, Unacademy has sacked a teacher, Karan Sangwan, who appealed to students to vote for educated candidates. The edtech platform justified Sangwan's layoff saying that the classroom is not a place to share personal opinions and views.

Unacademy co-founder Roman Saini said that Sangwan was in breach of contract and therefore the company had to part ways with him.


However, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal defended Sangwan and posted a message on the X platform (formerly known as Twitter), "Is it a crime to appeal to vote for educated people? If someone is illiterate, personally I respect them. But public representatives cannot be illiterate. This is the era of science and technology. Illiterate public representatives can never build the modern India of the 21st century."

Y Sathish Reddy, chairman of Telangana State Renewable Energy Development Corporation, also posted on X, "With all due respect to #Unacademy, it is highly inappropriate to suspend a teacher who simply requested not to vote for illiterates. They are liable for a proper explanation! #UninstallUnacademy."

Other politicians such as Congress Pawan Khera, TMC's Mahua Moitra have also slammed Unacademy for sacking Sangwan.

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Updated: 19 Aug 2023, 10:19 AM IST
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