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Poonam Pandey’s ‘death’: What really happened?

Poonam Pandey, an Indian model and reality TV star, has announced that she hasn’t died of cervical cancer. Her announcement on Instagram came a day after the model’s manager announced that she had died of cervical cancer, on Friday.

“I am alive. I didn’t die of cervical cancer. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same about the hundreds and thousands of women who have lost their lives due to cervical cancer.”

“I am sorry caused this tear and I am sorry to those I have hurt. My intention: to shock everyone into the conversation that we are not talking enough about – cervical cancer,” she said in another post, NDTV reports.

She said that her “death” post was an effort to initiate a conversation and spread awareness about cervical cancer.

“Unlike some other cancers, Cervical Cancer is entirely preventable. The key lies in the HPV vaccine and early detection tests. We have the means to ensure no one loses their life to this disease,” she said.

The model is being heavily criticised by social media users for “faking her death” to spread awareness about the disease.

Yesterday, Poonam Pandey’s team put out a statement saying that the model died of cervical cancer. The announcement had shocked everyone in the entertainment industry. The reactions ranged from disbelief to scepticism as many had seen the model at an event in Goa three days ago.

The 32-year-old shot to fame during the 2011 Cricket World Cup when she posted a video message saying she would strip if Team India won. She did not, but did post a nude photo when her favourite team Kolkata Knight Riders won the IPL the next year.

Over the years, she has gathered a legion of social media followers with her controversial statements and was often seen in explicit videos. In 2022, she drew wide attention with a stint in the Kangana Ranaut-led reality show ‘Lock Upp’. She also acted in some films.