Priyanka Chopra says ‘of course’ racism is to blame for scrutiny of Meghan Markle

‘Of course it has to do with racism, it's an obvious reason’

Priyanka Chopra has blamed racism for the intense scrutiny the Duchess of Sussex has faced in recent years.

The Isn't It Romantic star, who has been friends with the duchess for several years, explained in a new interview that the royal's character hasn't changed since reaching new levels of fame.

When asked about the negative press coverage Meghan has received, Chopra told The Sunday Times Magazine: "I've seen that and it's really unfortunate."

"But if there's anyone who can handle it, it's her," Chopra added. "Of course it has to do with racism, it's an obvious reason. But the beauty of Meg is that she's been herself through all of this."

The actor continued, saying that the duchess is still the "same chick" she's always been.

"Now that she's got a real platform, she talks about the same things she always did," Chopra said.

"We spent hours speaking about the difference that influence and dialogue can make to the world before this whole thing happened, so what you see now is authentically her. She's always been the girl wanting to move the needle."

In January 2018, two months after Prince Harry and Meghan's engagement was announced, the Duchess of Sussex deleted her personal Instagram account.

Before it was removed, the Instagram account featured several photographs of the duchess with Chopra.

"We just connected on how we see the world and as girls... Meghan is such a progressive, modern girl," the Baywatch star said.

"She's what the world is today – a self-made woman who looks like each one of us. I mean, she's stunning, but she is so completely herself."

The pair reportedly first met at the Elle Women in Television dinner in 2016.

Chopra attended the royal wedding in May 2018, wearing a lavender Vivienne Westwood suit for the ceremony at St George's Chapel in Windsor and a sparkling gold Dior gown for the evening reception.

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The actor recently opened up about the racist bullying she endured as a teenager.

The 36-year-old, who moved from India to the US when was 13, said she was "treated differently because I'm brown".

“I had, you know, really racist behaviour when I was in high school in 10th grade. I was called ‘Brownie’, ‘Curry’, [told to] ‘go back on the elephant you came on’, and that really affected me when I was a kid and affected my self-esteem," she said.

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