Coldplay video sparks Twitter outrage over Indian stereotypes

Published: January 31, 2016


British rock band Coldplay’s new single Hymn For The Weekend video, which also features singer Beyoncé Knowles and Bollywood actor Sonam Kapoor, has sparked a debate on its Indian inspiration.

The video, which released on Friday, became a topic of debate among the Twitterati, with some calling it a ‘stereotypical’ portrayal of the country.

While some slammed the video for cultural appropriation, others defended the Mumbai-shot video calling it as an appreciation of the foreign culture.


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Detractors took aim at both Coldplay band — comprising Chris Martin, Jonny Buckland, Guy Berryman and Will Champion, and Beyoncé on Twitter.

While Beyoncé’s appearance dressed up as a Bollywood star faced a backlash, some pointed out that this isn’t the first time Coldplay has ‘used or misused’ Asian culture in its videos.

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Hymn For The Weekend is the latest single from the band’s new album A Head Full of Dreams. The video of the much hyped song seems to be a leaf out of a book on India, with Beyoncé  as a glamorous Bollywood diva and Sonam walking among ruins in an ethnic attire.


It also gives a sneak-peak into Indian classical dance forms, and features Coldplay’s frontman Martin enjoying touristy things — from exploring India with a ride in a ‘black and yellow’ taxi, and even in a boat on a ghat, to celebrating the festival of colours in Mumbai.

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Here are some of the Tweets sparking the hot debate:

The video captures the essence of Mumbai, which is also known as the city of dreams, with visuals from its streets. The clip has been directed by Ben Mor.

Watch here:

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Reader Comments (18)

  • Jan 31, 2016 - 1:33PM

    I watched this video, it’s more than perfect!
    I don’t know why these people are overreacting. Recommend

  • Rahul
    Jan 31, 2016 - 1:58PM

    Notice how most of these Twitteratis are Muslims defending their country India? That’s secularism. Recommend

  • Pakistani
    Jan 31, 2016 - 2:44PM

    did you read what @BuziingBey tweeted about being considered ‘terrorist’? That’s definitely ‘Indian secularism’. Recommend

  • Bunny Rabbit
    Jan 31, 2016 - 3:25PM

    Now that floppy Sonam has something to tell her grand kids – ” I played a small role in this notorious English vedio “. Post 30 with a string of flops , I think this is the best thing that has happened to her . Recommend

  • Asad ali
    Jan 31, 2016 - 3:37PM

    Great video,What’s wrong in it?Recommend

  • Striver
    Jan 31, 2016 - 7:48PM

    Their “outrage” stems from the need to show a different face to the world then unpleasant and hideous face behind the mask.Just like “Bollywood” which is so totally unrepresentative of the real Indian culture, they want to appear more “western” then the west.

    It all stems from the need to wanting to be something you’re not; a dislike of own culture; lack of confidence. Recommend

  • charu
    Jan 31, 2016 - 9:01PM

    @Pakistani: bhai, i dont think he is referring to India…he is talking about USA generalizing muslims as “terrorists” and then embraing “indian” culture…which thankfully and whole heartedly includes muslims!!!!Recommend

  • IndianGuy
    Jan 31, 2016 - 10:26PM

    @Pakistani: That guy is actually an Indian American. So, when says in a country where he is being considered a terrorist, he means America not India.Recommend

  • Sardar KHAN
    Jan 31, 2016 - 10:35PM

    Are you sure they are actual peoples names or synonymously names used by RAW’s agents to give some credibility.I am sure it is Indian’s habit to use Muslim sounding names in world media all the time.So don’t present this as a proof of indian Muslims are happy with the atrocious behaviour of majority hindhus with them.Don’t try to fool people with your wrong assumptions all the time. Recommend

  • TiffinBox
    Jan 31, 2016 - 11:00PM

    @Pakistani I am considered a Terrorist in my country (TiffinBox was made in India) and the objection by fellow Indian is what I am about too.Recommend

  • akm INDIAN
    Feb 1, 2016 - 12:36AM

    he is talking about USA , you mo….Recommend

  • DesiAtheist
    Feb 1, 2016 - 5:32AM

    @Pakistani, it seems you have a major comprehension problem. @BuziingBey is a desi american and talking about USA and not IndiaRecommend

  • Rahul
    Feb 1, 2016 - 5:38AM

    @Pakistani: It’s YOU who needs to read it carefully. He says he’s grateful to Beyonce to embrace ‘his’ culture. Now he feels accepted in a country which regards him as a terrorist because of what Beyonce did. He’s obviously talking about America. Why would Indians suddenly “accept” a Muslim in India if Beyonce embraces Indian culture? Recommend

  • Rahul
    Feb 1, 2016 - 8:12AM

    @Sardar KHAN:
    Let’s not start this argument. If you give me one incident of violence I can give you ten incidents of secularism. India is the only country in the world which has the gumption to promote its minorities. It has Muslims at top positions in almost every field. We’ve had Muslim presidents, vice presidents, Bollywood superstars, cricket captains, heads of nuclear programmes, top industrialists among others. Name one Muslim country which has a non Muslim at a top position. Just because you say it doesn’t make India non secular.Recommend

  • fact is fact
    Feb 1, 2016 - 10:38AM

    Do you know how many muslims have to compete out of how many hindus to get the acceptance and respect that they deserve (same follows with Pakistan)? Tough to answer this. Pakistan or India as becoming less and less secular.Recommend

  • LS
    Feb 1, 2016 - 10:10PM

    @fact is fact:
    If the local Muslims needed more participation they would get educated and NOT go to madarsa or would integrate into larger society. No one is stopping them from acquiring education. There are almost very little Muslim representation in top tier competitive colleges despite them being 25% of the population. All these colleges are government owned and fees is nominal. It is more about the culture than competition.Recommend

  • Sardar KHAN
    Feb 1, 2016 - 11:20PM

    Your logic doesn’t make sense at all.Can you tell what percent Muslims in india are on the top considering the 10% are Muslims population are Muslims.The Muslims who are on top in their profession have to work 50 times more than a hindu to achieve this.It is a myth that india is secular and since Modi’s rise to power it is going down hill every day whether you accept it or not.Facts are facts.I have seen your hateful comments on other world media as well.I think you are a paid troll for the indian agenciesRecommend

  • fact is fact
    Feb 2, 2016 - 2:15PM

    @Sardar KHAN:
    This is so hilarious of you that the points you shared in to address @Rahul ‘s comments are the same what I said in my previous post. To summarize your point, India and Pakistan are less secular day by day. Come on man, read it carefully what I say. If you think telling truth are hateful comments then be it. May be you have less information on subjects and that is why you don’t take my points as points not hate. For you sake, I m Pakistani not Indian. I support on things that would yield good results for the society. Im not a nationalist and do not support any nation with old age ideologies.Recommend

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