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Seven Indian women in BBC’s list of 100 most inspirational women

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New Delhi: It’s all about Indian women power all the way! Making a mark on the global map, seven Indian celebrated personalities including singer Asha Bhosle, tennis star Sania Mirza and veteran actress Kamini Kaushal have made it to BBC’s list of 100 most inspirational women.

The list was announced on Wednesday, read a statement.

Each year, BBC names 100 women – a mix of influential women who are world leaders in politics, science and entertainment, as well as less popular but inspirational women from all over the world.

Other names to crop up in the list are Rimppi Kumari (farmer), Smriti Nagpal (entrepreneur), Mumtaz Shaikh (campaigner) and Kanika Tekriwal (entrepreneur).

The names of the celebrities have taken their stories of success to the world with their dedication and hard work.

Legendary singer Asha, who started working in Bollywood in 1943, has recorded songs to be mimed in 1,000 films by hundreds of actresses.

And Kamini, better known as the Vivienne Leigh of her generation in Bollywood, has acted in more than 100 films. She was the leading actress in “Neecha Nagar” which won the best film in Cannes in 1946 – the first Indian film to do so.

Rimppi is a farmer who, along with her sister Karamjit, took over a 32-acre farm in Rajasthan after their father died.

Sania’s story is not hidden to anyone. She is one of India’s most successful tennis players and in 2015 was both the Wimbledon and US Open women’s doubles champion.

Smriti was inspired by her work as a sign language interpreter in India, which has the largest deaf population in the world, to set up Atulyakala.

Mumtaz’s fight to get free facilities for women through the Right to Pee network earned her the honour. She ensured 96 toilets were free for women to use in Mumbai and made the government set aside 50 million rupees ($770) to build female-only urinals around the city.

After being diagnosed with cancer in her early 20s, Kanika was determined to make her mark. She established India’s first and only marketplace for private jet and helicopter charters.

Complementing the 100 Women list, the BBC will offer audiences a raft of special content across all of its platforms. As part of the season, Sania will be interviewed by BBC World News presenter Yogita Limaye.

The list ‘100 women’ is a part of ‘100 Women season’ on BBC World News starting from Wednesday.

(IANS)

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BBC’s “Bollywood’s Dark Secret” speaks nothing

Anchor Rajini Vaidyanathan asks no hard-hitting questions. There is no answer to the crucial question: "why have Bollywood's casting-couch victims not come out with their experiences?"

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Apart from Radhika Apte holding forth in a British accent and Usha Jadhav speaking of her harrowing experience in a Marathi accent, the BBC's much-discussed documentary
BBC representational Image, wikimedia commons

Apart from Radhika Apte holding forth in a British accent and Usha Jadhav speaking of her harrowing experience in a Marathi accent, the BBC’s much-discussed documentary “Bollywood’s Dark Secret” says nothing that we haven’t already heard or seen.

Anchor Rajini Vaidyanathan asks no hard-hitting questions. There is no answer to the crucial question: “why have Bollywood’s casting-couch victims not come out with their experiences?”

Radhika Apte talks about men in Bollywood being as powerful as “Gods” whom no one would dare point a finger at. She isn’t doing it either. She has no personal story of exploitation to share.

Radhika Apte talks about men in Bollywood being as powerful as "Gods" whom no one would dare point a finger at. She isn't doing it either. She has no personal story of exploitation to share.
Radhika Apte, wikimedia commons

It’s all about others. Luckily for us, Usha Jadhav is not afraid to speak her mind. She speaks unabashedly about the man who abused her physically, touched her anywhere and everywhere, put his hand in her clothes.

But who was this man? I even asked Usha why she doesn’t want to name him.

“Because it wouldn’t be right,” she told me.

Right for whom?

Is this really what Bollywood has come to mean in the global arena’s “MeToo” campaign? Two actresses, one of whom is clearly talking about an out-of-body experience (all rhetorics and hypothesis suggesting she has never been through the casting couch), the other putting words to an experience that is too painful on recall and sounds more like a confession at a distress meeting in a sex clinic.

Beyond the truth about the symbiotic sexuality ingrained in Bollywood’s demand-and-supply mindset, there is the truth about the potential victim allowing herself to be exploited of her own free will.

Also Read: Rakhi Sawant Speaks up About Casting Couch

How free is that will which compels a girl to get on the casting couch voluntarily? The BBC documentary is not able to extricate Bollywood’s ‘Dark Secret’ from the clutches of cliches. It needed more muscle and heft to be persuasive. All we get is a couple of opinions swathed in vague rhetorics. No naming no shaming.

After watching the BBC’s sketchy account of the casting couch in Bollywood, I am more than ever convinced that the “MeToo” movement is far removed from our perception. The predators won’t stop, because there is no concerted will to stop them. (BollywoodCountry)