The criticism of an Israeli filmmaker of a film portraying the exodus of India’s largest Hindu population from the contested Kashmir region has caused outrage in India, prompting the Israeli ambassador to apologize. On Tuesday night, the film BBC’s “Judaai Jews: The Untold Story” was screened in New Delhi. It seemed what had started as a discussion on Israel’s racial policy of evacuating Jewish communities from the Palestinian territories turned into a heated debate regarding the documentary’s subject matter.

Following a protest by Indians living in Kashmir Valley to show solidarity with their Muslim brethren and object to the portrayal of Muslims as “terrorists” and their exodus from Kashmir during the early 70s, filmmaker Gautam Navlakha posted his encounter with an Indian diplomat at 6 am on Wednesday.

The diplomat explained that he was upset when Navlakha told him the film would be screened in New Delhi, as it depicts the displacement of “non-Muslims” from the Muslim-majority Kashmir.” Navlakha’s post led to an avalanche of comments and criticism from various quarters, from opposition parties to the government. Indian ambassador to Israel, Syed Akbaruddin, wrote on Twitter that Navlakha’s claims about his “sarcastic” comments were “absolutely untrue” and that he was embarrassed by them.

Navlakha responded by tweeting Akbaruddin, “I’m sorry for the way I expressed myself at 6 am this morning … I was still groggy from sleep.” In a statement, Navlakha said he stood by his comments, which he felt had been “distorted and misconstrued. On Wednesday, Israel’s ambassador to India, Daniel Carmon, issued a statement saying “the Ambassador of Israel in India apologizes if his comments were misunderstood and caused any hurt.”

“The Indian ambassador in Tel Aviv also spoke with the filmmaker, who explained that the comment was made during an informal conversation over dinner and was not meant to be taken literally. “The Embassy views with utmost gravity this completely unacceptable statement. We regret any hurt the remarks might have caused,” Carmon stated. He added, “there was no intent on the part of the Ambassador or anyone in the Embassy to offend anyone.”