After months of deafening silence over the mysterious death of the late actor and physicist Sushant Singh Rajput, the high and mighty of Bollywood “ganged up” together to “gag” the media. It started with targeting a specific number of journalists, but the stance was later changed to include “all of media”. What was the media’s fault? – They were asking questions (somewhat difficult ones) to the once demigods who live in their own little fantasy land.
Instead of helping with the much needed clean up in an industry polluted with drug abuse, illicit money trades, casting couch, sex rackets and exploitation they decided to put a stop on free speech they advocate all the time! Backlash should be expected and something Bollywood will have to deal with if it refuses to have an honest conversation and own up to its shortcomings!
Playing the Victim Card
Attacking the messenger ideology has left Bollywood totally exposed in the eye of the common public, damage control would have been better organised by owning up to mistakes made and assuring cooperation with the authorities. However, they decided to question and malign the very people asking for Justice for Sushant Singh Rajput, ‘gag’ media houses to save what is left of their “reputation”! Moreover, some have audaciously announced “nobody has forced the people to go and watch films, don’t watch our films if you don’t want to”. Self-destructive mode is on!!!
What’s there in a name? That but we call Bollywood by any other name will reek of Egotism!
Bollywood is a term coined to reflect “Bombay Hollywood” and copy the term “Hollywood”. This in a way is a reminder to every one of the existent Plagiarism in the name itself. Over the last 2 decades it has become a very influential and powerful industry; sometimes also claiming to be a soft power of the country. However, in the last few months the dark underbelly of the “starry” world has been badly exposed. For the first time the industry is encircled with frustrated and angry audience questioning their hypocrisy!
Asking difficult questions on issues that matter is not a witch hunt!
Plagued with the dark secrets of casting couch, bullying, nepotism, “gangism” and narcissism the deafening silence on the mysterious death of Sushant Singh Rajput was a final nail in coffin of the industry. It is about time that people have difficult conversations and robust debates about these issues. As a matter of fact, some personal observations have been made and …
Here a list of claims Vs Realities of Bollywood:
|Creativity is prevalent, appreciated and celebrated.||Plagiarism has plagued Bollywood for a long time even the most iconic romantic scene in Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge is a “copy” of the scene from Clint Eastwood’s In the Line of Fire. Copy from Hollywood is not the end – many big budget films are copied from true and grounded stories portrayed in regional cinema. They are given a “grand look” and a new “classy colour”.|
|Promoting Feminism and Women empowerment||Eve teasing is nothing new in terms of Bollywood, classic scenes where girls are presented as damsels in distress when a roadside goon is either shown attacking her or passing lewd comments, (all in time for a male heroic figure to come to the rescue) are not uncommon. What is even more disturbing is male actors not being held accountable for their comments like girls should not be a “choosa hua aam na lage” and “felt like a r*&(ed woman” after a workout. The reality is not women empowerment but disgusting Obscenity, vulgarity and objectification of women. Even in “item numbers” where female actors do cameo appearances for a dance number. Requirements are clear – show skin, show navel, show legs! Powerful female actors who happily hold placards for women empowerment dance happily on vulgar lyrics that objectify women.|
|Promote the notion of Health and Fitness||Issue of drugs and alcohol abuse extensively shown on screen in a glamorising form has been heavily debated. Many claim that it is creative freedom, others say that wrong messages should not be given out in the name of “creative freedom”. However, the recent developments have drawn attention to the prevalent problem of drug abuse and alcohol abuse in the industry. The matter becomes especially important when a so called “A- Lister” in the hope of correcting his image before his film release admits on record of there being a major drugs problem in the industry. Most actors who claim to be advocates of martial arts, outdoors activities end up releasing and promoting video games for money.|
|Encouraging Secularism as an attitude||Presenting Selective derogatory content on a particular religion has been a customary practice. Sexualising Hindu Gods and deities and using terms like “sexy Durga”, “sexy Radha” may have been a long seen problem, however a recent blunder where memes showing lead figures of the industry in a lewd and rude way (with subtitles of “Majama in my Pajama”) mocking the pious festival of Navratri have totally exposed the so called “secularism” of Bollywood|
|Champion the cause of saving the environment||Donning leather jackets, and proudly sharing insights into having 100s of shoes and never repeating clothes is actually anything but sustainable! Pulling down a car window glass to tell someone off for littering is a great Publicity Stunt, but one wonders what happens to their ideals when their crew litters a beautiful village with biomedical waste in the testing times of COVID. Giving out free advice on the holy and pious occasion of Diwali to not burst crackers to “look out for asthmatics like me!” is a great PR strategy, but getting spotted by Paparazzi happily enjoying your cigarettes and cigars on a private Yacht is NOT SUSTAINABLE/ENVIORNMENTALY FRIENDLY LIFESTYLE!|
|The notion of promoting Inclusivity||Most of the so called “A-Listers” have been horrendously embarrassed in recent times for actively endorsing “fairness creams” and raising their voice for BLM movement. The reality is that images of “size zero”, perfect figure of “36,24,26” with fair skin (white skin) girl and a perfectly chiselled “6 pack abs” boy is endorsed in all the films. Over years characters like “Poo…” in “K3G” have been glamourized and systematically girls have been made to believe that if you do not fit in the image of those glamourous figures there is something fundamentally wrong with you. Homophobic content propagation is also nothing new in Bollywood. Portraying the 3rd gender comically is a great insult to the transgender community of India.|
|Inspiring cultural ethos of India||Presenting Distorted historical facts in mainstream cinema without appropriate disclaimers have been practiced for a long time. The most recent example includes maligning the most decorated intuitions of India (known not only for its power but for its morality) The Indian Airforce! Where on Earth will we ever find an example of a film dedicated to a brave fighter pilot having a dialogue of “I don’t love my country – I just want to fly planes”? Manufacturing controversy for attention gain and managing PR activities is also nothing new, however in recent times these attempts have come in the public domain.|
|Bollywood is one big happy family||A listers and so called “stars” live both figuratively and physically in their vanity vans all the time! No one is unaware of the fact that the industry is plagued with the virus of Narcissism and dynastic products. Outsiders have always been isolated and singled out – whilst the non-talented “nepokids” have been promoted limitlessly. So called “actors” better known as Nepotism products do not know anything about the culture or language of India. Speak a certain form of “basterdised English” (their English is never grammatically correct and they are proud of it!) are used to being treated like Gods, whereas the crew members who travel along with them and work on the film sets day and night are deprived of basic food and cleaning and utilities. Some have gone on record to say that get treated worse than slaves. These videos have been made public and are available on social media platforms. Film producers and directors make millions of bucks but still the film sets have following problem: No ambulance for stuntmenNo toilets and hygiene products for cast and crew Sanitisation and workplace health and safety are never looked after! Nobody dares to check the studios; film sets etc. because questioning them is a witch hunt!!!|
Many film actors have become MPs and will happily use the remarks like “thaali me chhed!” in the parliament (indicative of a lordship and an obedient servant ideology/mind-set) but have never been seen raising concerns on any of the above issues!!
Thanks to Late actor and physicist Mr. Sushant Singh Rajput (May God Bless His Soul!), these things have come out in public and the box of worms disguised as a Pandora box is now open!
In death he has managed to enlighten the masses!