Kapil Dev spoke at the ‘Chat with Champions’ event hosted by coaching institute Aakash. It was here that he admitted that he did not understand and agree with the concepts of mental health and depression. He also stated that if players feel pressure while playing IPL, they simply shouldn't play anymore. He also claimed that students who sit in air conditioned classrooms where their parents pay the fees are not entitled to complain about stress.
"I hear a lot of times on TV that there's a lot of pressure on players to play in the IPL. Then I only say one thing, don't play. If a player has passion, there will be no pressure. I can't understand these American terms, like depression. I'm a farmer and we play because we enjoy the game, and there can't be any pressure while enjoying the game,” he said. His statement garnered laughs from the audience too.
He further added, “I remember going to a school where students of class 10 and 12 said they face lot of pressure. I said, 'So face pressure!'. You people sit in air-conditioned rooms with fees paid by your parents, teachers cannot beat you up, then were is this pressure coming from? Ask me what pressure is all about. Teachers used to beat us up and then would ask where we had gone. Students need to convert this into pleasure and fun, pressure is a very wrong word.”
Olympic medal winner Saina Nehwal was also seen sitting beside him and laughing at his comments. However, users on Twitter were concerned with the amount of ignorance that Dev displayed, and have called him out. Here are some reactions.