Live Marriage Proposal Makes Viewers Uncomfortable
  • by Ethel Navales
  • October 28, 2013
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A few weeks ago, we brought you the most elaborate marriage proposal in history and, as expected, we were met with mixed reviews. The proposal made some viewers sigh with envy while others sighed out of boredom.

Viewers simply could not agree on whether or not the 27-minute-long proposal was cute or too much. However, viewers all seemed to agree on their opinion of the following proposal.

This past Thursday, the Today show was about to interview Simone Jhingoor for her work in Women’s Housing and Economic Development Corporation, a non-profit organization that provides services to low-income women and their families. Suddenly, her boyfriend Chirag Shah appeared to say a few words. He then got down on one knee and proposed to her on live television.

Cute right?

Apparently, the public doesn’t think so. While the idea of a public marriage proposal sounds nice, just about every media outlet has called this particular proposal “awkward.”  The Stir describes the whole ordeal by stating, “Before Simone got a chance to tell us [about her organization], she was interrupted by the most awkward proposal ever. Her boyfriend Chirag Shah apparently thought it was a good idea to show up, grab the microphone from Al, and give a pretty me-centric speech before asking Simone to marry him.”

Bustle described the inappropriate tactic of having Jhingoor believe she was allowed to speak about what she was passionate about.

Jhingoor was duped into thinking she’d just earned a shot to share her professional success and passion with the entire country, giving her a level of professional validation few of us ever have the opportunity to enjoy. It’s a dream come true for any one — man or woman — who’s thoroughly dedicated to their work. But before Jhingoor can even utter a syllable about her job or what she does to help the people of the Bronx, she’s whisked away to hear a diatribe about her now-fiancé and his boyhood dreams

 

Jezebel agreed with Bustle’s sentiments and seemed irritated with Shah’s “self-centered” speech:

Suddenly, her boyfriend, Chirag Shah, showed up with a rather self-centered (“I moved, MY dream”) over-rehearsed speech that turned into a marriage proposal. Bait and switch, dude.

As Simone realized what was happening, she tried to fix her hair. She had a tight-lipped smile on her face, but she seemed slightly annoyed. Still, Chirag got on one knee and Simone “yes.” Their friends were behind her, cheering. There was a stiff hug.

But immediately afterwards, when Al asked if she had any idea Chirag was about to propose, Simone said, “No! I thought I was here talking about my organization. I’m giving back to the community!” Right. You thought it was your moment — you were excited for your moment — and he made it all about him.

 
While the public had no problem analyzing the proposal and slamming Shah for his awkward methods, it may be important to hear what the couple has to say. Simone Jhingoor has openly stated that she is upset with the negative reactions and does not believe that her fiance stole her spotlight at all. In fact, the Today show posted a follow-up on Friday with some details about the organization. When YourTango asked Jhingoor to comment on the negative backlash to the proposal, she says:

I am unhappy about the recent backlash that was received from my on-air engagement to Chirag. He does not deserve to be labeled self-centered on feminist websites like Jezebel critiquing the entire experience when he is the most thoughtful person I know. I am moved by the beautiful proposal he arranged out of a genuine intention to make me happy. All of my close friends and family members cried when they saw it because of how sweet it was. My time on the show was never supposed to be about my work as it was about a proposal Chirag wanted to surprise me with on our four-year anniversary. Also, I am generally a very calm and centered person, which is a result of much of the personal change work that I have engaged in. It was disappointing for people to apply their own lens and cultural biases to interpret that I was pissed off and upset about not getting to speak about my work. Plus, Chirag has always been supportive of my social change work and activism, which is what I love about him.

Watch the proposal for yourself and tell us what you think.

 

1comments

  1. Chirag Shah is obviously South Asian, but Simone Jhingoor could pass as either South Asian or East Asian. Does anyone know her ethnicity: I am guessing she is either Bengali, Northeast Indian, Nepali, or even Southeast Asian.

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