Reality television has an undeniable allure, drawing audiences into the lives and dilemmas of participants as they navigate the complexities of love, relationships, and societal expectations. However, what appears on screen often masks a more intricate reality behind the scenes. This is exemplified by the recent Pradhyuman Maloo controversy, which has not only shone a light on the personal struggles of one participant but has also highlighted the deeply problematic nature of the show Indian Matchmaking.

Pradhyuman Maloo from Indian Matchmaking


Pradhyuman Maloo Controversy

Pradhyuman Maloo, a central figure in the reality show’s first season, initially entered the limelight as a client seeking a suitable partner with the assistance of Sima Taparia, the show’s matchmaker. However, in an unexpected twist, Maloo later in the second season of the show revealed that he had found love off-screen with actor-model Ashima Chauhaan. During the episode, he narrated how the two were together for two years before they got married in Udaipur in the month of February, 2022. What started as a potentially heartwarming narrative took a disconcerting turn when Chauhaan filed a First Information Report (FIR) against Maloo, accusing him and his family of physical and emotional abuse and harassment.

Pradhyuman Maloo found love outside Indian Matchmaking


The controversy surrounding Maloo and Chauhaan’s relationship shines a light on the delicate balance between reality television’s scripted narratives and the genuine complexities of human interactions. It serves as a poignant reminder that the glossy pictures presented on screen often belie the tumultuous realities that individuals face behind closed doors.

This controversy took us back to the show and reminded us how the show has been problematic from the very onset. Beyond the Pradhyuman Maloo controversy, the broader show itself has faced considerable criticism for several troubling aspects. Listing some of the many reasons this show does not sit right for contemporary times. 

Reinforcement of Traditional Gender Roles

The show often reinforces and glamorises traditional gender roles and stereotypes. It presents a narrative where women are expected to prioritise marriage and family over their own ambitions and themselves, and where men are judged based on their professional success. This perpetuates regressive norms that limit individuals’ choices and strengthens inequality.

Also Read: The Big Announcement: Team India Squad for Asia Cup 2023!

Caste and Class Bias

The show implicitly and sometimes explicitly reflects caste and class biases in the matchmaking process. It highlights the emphasis on caste compatibility and social status, which contributes to discrimination and division within Indian society. This reinforces the discriminatory practice of caste-based matchmaking, which goes against the principles of equality and social justice.

Toxic Beauty Expectations

The show often places a heavy emphasis on physical appearance and skin colour as criteria for attractiveness. This promotes harmful beauty standards and fuels colourism, where fair skin is favoured over darker skin tones. It perpetuates a damaging narrative that equates light skin with beauty and success.

Pradhyuman Maloo & unrealistic beauty in Indian Matchmaking


Pressure on Marriage

Indian Matchmaking portrays marriage as the ultimate goal and suggests that a person’s worth is often tied to their marital status. This can lead to undue pressure on individuals to conform to societal norms, even if they may not be ready for marriage or have different life goals. It overlooks the importance of personal growth, individual choices, and emotional well-being.

Over-simplification of Relationships

The show tends to oversimplify complex relationships and life decisions. The process of finding a life partner is presented as a series of checkboxes and criteria, neglecting the emotional, psychological, and compatibility aspects that are crucial for a successful and fulfilling marriage. This approach undermines the depth and complexity of human relationships. Sima Aunty’s famous “compromise and adjust” irks at multiple levels. 

A Call for Thoughtful Media Representation

The Pradhyuman Maloo controversy serves as a stark reminder that reality TV often masks the complexities of real life. Beyond the glossy façade of Indian Matchmaking, there lies multiple societal issues that deserve our attention. The show’s popularity has inadvertently opened the door for conversations about the problematic aspects it perpetuates. As viewers, we have a responsibility to critically engage with media content and demand more thoughtful and inclusive representations.