BBC presenter Jeremy Clarkson, who hosts popular TV program “Top Gear,” has been suspended for hitting a producer. The controversial presenter, who earlier invited controversy due to racial comments toward India and Mexico, has already attracted almost 685,000 signatories from a petition supporting his reinstatement.
BBC has already dropped the next three episodes of “Top Gear” that were supposed to come out.
Official statement from BBC News special correspondent Lucy Manning said, “The incident is believed to have happened last week, but was reported to the BBC on Monday and dealt with on Tuesday.”
“The next two episodes of Top Gear will not be broadcast and it’s understood that a third programme, the final of the series, is unlikely to be transmitted.”
In response to his suspension, Clarkson retweeted a post on Twitter saying “how can @BBC not show the remaining episodes of Top Gear, cant this be resolved without making the fans suffer.”
It had been a difficult decision for BBC as “Top Gear” is watched by 350 million viewers across 170 countries. They found themselves caught between a huge revenue-earning program and maintaining internal discipline.
Clarkson had been presenting the show since 2002. This has been reiterated by PR consultant Mark Borkowski, saying it was a “difficult decision” BBC had to make.
Borkowski added, “A lot of TV executives around the world are looking at this fracas thinking ‘would we like to get our hands on Jeremy Clarkson?'”
Clarkson’s other two co-hosts James May and Richard Hammond undermined the importance of the incident leading to the suspension, claiming he had been “involved in a bit of a dust-up, and I don’t think it’s that serious.”