Sunday, March 15, 2015

Indian Daughter Speaks - By Esha Tewari Pande

From last few weeks, the movie ‘India's Daughter’ has been a point of discussion everywhere. The movie is about a rape that happened in Delhi in 2012.
It quickly became a controversy where some people believe that the movie should be banned; the other ones believe that it shouldn’t. 

Indian Government banned it and justified the ban by saying they are concerned by the remarks made in the film by one of the rapists, Mukesh Singh - who is on death row and of course other political legal /illegal issues associated with Flim which is still a controversy.
People who are in favor of ban are saying that the movie reflects a wrong image of India and will impact India's tourism. Just like Indian government, they believe that a rapist’s point of view should not be publicized like this. 

I watched many debates where people are discussing about what the rapist said in the movie and why this should be banned. So I have a few questions for Indian government and the people who support the ban: 

1. Why the rapist’s point of view in the movie is a subject of discussion? Why are you not concerned about what the ‘Educated lawyers of India’ said in the movie? 
It's even more shameful to argue that, isn't it?
2. If we have such a problem showing it now then why the permission was given to shoot it to begin with? 
3. If you are so much concerned about what the rapist has to say in the movie and you had to ban it - what actions have you taken in last 3 years? The 17-year-old rapist will be free in sometime and enjoy his life. 
4. What actions are you taking against the lawyers who insulted women in the documentary? We may expect such views from a rapist who is already in jail but hearing such poisonous words from so-called 'educated Indian lawyers' is un-acceptable.
5. Now that the movie has already been made, and government can't stop the makers from sharing it with the rest of the world. How banning a movie in India will impact Indian tourism?
It only shows the Goverment loophole. One person came in India, took permission / not took permission, made the movie & released it in the whole world. Now when Goverment can't justify its act, they banned the movie....& where ? Only in India.
It’s sad that the whole world can see the movie but just not India when it’s about an Indian daughter.
I know, this is now a political issue and therefore, this will be a controvery for ever....
We will listen, read a lot more new twist in the tale every then & now.....However, nobody can change the fact what Lawyers said in the movie & how they still believe they are right. 
6. Do you really think in the age of social media when everything starts trending in Twitter & Facebook immediately as it happens, we can hide anything from anybody?
7. At this point of time, do you really think banning helped? Don’t you think it has become more of a discussion point for everyone since the ban?
Today even after the ban everybody knows about the documentary and what is showcased in it. Now we are living in an age of social media where everyone has freedom to express their views. How banning anything within India can help in any way – still remains my question. 
I have seen the movie, and I feel the same what author Chetan Bhagat felt - that the movie makes you think and shakes you up. It's a must watch.
Rapes happen in every country and the data is available on Internet. 
  Each country has its own appalling bloody tally. India has a population of 1.2 billion. Here a rape occurs every 20 minutes. In England and Wales, 85,000 women are raped every year. In Denmark one in five women experiences a sexual assault. Sexual assault, rape, acid attacks, murder, domestic violence, termination of female fetuses, sex trafficking and female genital mutilation are all manifestations of male power abuse.  

  This movie is NOT reflecting that every single man in India thinks like a rapist but it reflects that the mindset needs to be changed about women. This movie makes you reflect. We can't deny the fact what Indian lawyers said in the documentary and this is not new. We have heard this in India time and again, even in the parliament.
  I totally agree with Editor’s Guild- that the message of the documentary is misunderstood.
It actually portrays the courage, sensitivity and a liberal outlook of a family traumatized by the brutality inflicted on their daughter and the continuing shameful attitude towards women among the convict as well as the educated including lawyers and multiple voices in support of women's freedom and dignity. While the Supreme Court has declared that there should be the broadest freedom to express even the most unacceptable of views, the message that emerges from the documentary is wholly positive and its power is such as to make people re-examine their own attitudes and the attitudes of people around them. 
  The offenses against women are a part of the story, but the full story starts with a girl not being as welcome as a boy since birth. When sweets are distributed at the birth of a boy, not of a girl. When the boy child is nourished more than the girl, when a girl's movements are restricted and her freedoms and choices are curtailed, when she is sent as a domestic slave to her husband's home… If a girl is accorded no value, if a girl is worth less than a boy, then it stands to reason there will be men who believe they can do whatever they like with women. 

  With this I also request our mothers/sisters / girls / women of India to change their mindset as well. Don't think that it's your culture to listen to any imprudent thing from anybody. Be vocal if you don't like their attitude but don't change yours just because they asked you to.
Mothers, please don't only ask your daughters to learn how to cook or how to spread bed sheets or learn all the housework. Ask your son as well.
At the time of marriage, why do people ask from a girl "khana banana aata hai beti"?
Why? Are you trying to find a partner for your son or a full time maid? 
Or asking your daughter "Beti, don't wear jeans, ladke wale dekhne aane wale hai. Why? What's wrong in wearing jeans in front of anyone?
Or wearing a saari/suit, when visiting your in-law’s place or in front of your in-laws. However, otherwise you wear jeans, shirts, shorts and post photographs in Facebook. Why encourage these double standards? If you like wearing jeans or anything for that matter that makes you happy, what is the problem in expressing yourself in front of anyone? And what is the other person’s business in that?

  If you believe that you don't think like rapist Mukesh Singh, yet you do the same things what are mentioned above in the name of culture; you are no better than Mukesh Singh. 
And that is what the documentary does – it makes you think. Think!!

ESHA TEWARI

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