When Cameras Cross The Line: The Price Of A Perfect 'Pap Click'

From chasing Alia Bhatt's car after her delivery to injuring Aishwarya's mother; here's how some paps went too far.

Hot Take
4 min read

Being a celebrity in the 21st century is a two-edged sword. On one hand, there's fame, money and a plethora of lofty perks and privileges, while on the other there's unimaginable privacy threats and daily violation of boundaries.

New parents Alia Bhatt and Ranbir Kapoor recently fell prey to this increasingly vicious paparazzi culture. After giving birth to a baby girl, Alia and Ranbir were on their way back from the hospital when photographers hounded their car for a picture of the newborn. Videos show them thronging the Bollywood duo while Ranbir tries his best to cover his daughter's face.


Privacy is a fundamental right and celebrities should not be treated as exceptions, just because they hold fame and power.

Hounding an ordinary couple to disclose their newborn's face to the entire world would be objectively unacceptable; what is stopping us from extending that courtesy to celebrities?

Alas, Alia and Ranbir are not the first to deal with such appalling violations, in the name of 'paparazzi culture'. From injuring Aishwarya Rai's mother to zooming on Sonam Kapoor's sideboob, here's a list of every time the cameras crossed the line:

1. Rhea Chakraborty

2020 was a singularly horrifying year for model and actor Rhea Chakraborty. After Bollywood actor and her boyfriend at the time, Sushant Singh Rajput died by suicide, Rhea was embroiled in one of the biggest controversies in the country. Accused of receiving and delivering drugs to the late actor, the actor was arrested by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) on 8 September. Even though she eventually received bail a month later, the media subjected the actor to a vicious witch hunt, primarily fuelled by misogyny, unfounded media trials and moral policing. The paparazzi added to the pressure, hounding her every time she'd be seen in public. She especially got thronged by paparazzi on the day of her appearance before the NCB.

From chasing Alia Bhatt's car after her delivery to injuring Aishwarya's mother; here's how some paps went too far.

Rhea Chakraborty being hounded by the paps outside NCB office.

(Photo Courtesy: Google)

2. Kareena Kapoor Khan & Taimur Ali Khan

It's no secret that media frenzy around 'star kids' have skyrocketed after actor Kareena Kapoor Khan gave birth to her and Saif Ali Khan's first son, Taimur. Since the child's first breath, the paparazzi seems to have sworn to never lot go of a single opportunity to shove their cameras in front of the family. There's been instances where Saif has even requested photographers for some privacy.

It's very disheartening to see Taimur also demanding that the media back off. No child should have to grow up with a thousand eyes on him, at all times, monitoring his every move. Here's a video showing Taimur irked at the photographers as he yells, "No photos, please!"


3. Anuska Sharma & Virat Kohli

In 2021, Bollywood actor Anushka Sharma took to Instagram to call out a news publication for invading her and her husband, cricketer Virat Kohli's privacy. The actor wrote about how the newspaper had published a photo of her and Virat Kohli lounging in their balcony, despite being requested not to do so. The Phillauri actor wrote, "Despite requesting the said photographer and the publication, they still continue to invade our privacy. Guys! Stop this right now!"

From chasing Alia Bhatt's car after her delivery to injuring Aishwarya's mother; here's how some paps went too far.

Anushka Sharma bringing her privacy violation to light on her Instagram Story.

(Photo Courtesy: Instagram)

4. Sonam Kapoor Ahuja

For an event, actor Sonam Kapoor Ahuja donned a gorgeous ruffled collar Rasario Atelier jumpsuit. Some photographers turned sleazy, zooming in on her side-boob and photographing the deep cuts in the outfit. Newspapers even published her pictures, with snide remarks on her sartorial choice and the headline, "Ring-side View". The Neerja actor shut down both the paps and the media for using her pictures in such a distasteful manner. In a tweet, she called the coverage "sexist nonsense" and highlighted that she was very comfortable in her body and her outfit.


5. Aishwarya Rai Bachchan

The viciousness of this 'pap culture' merely starts at flouting celebrities' personal boundaries. At its worst, the consequences of this aggressive hounding can lead to fatal accidents and mishaps. Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and her mother, Vrinda Rai unfortunately found themselves in a similarly dangerous situation. A few photographers - in an attempt to click a picture of the superstar with her daughter, Aaradhya - reportedly pushed Aishwarya's mother. The actress rushed to her mom after seating her daughter in the car. The chaos overwhelmed 5-year-old Aaradhya, who began sobbing.

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