One wonders why some crowd-pleasing film-makers feed their audience with trash. Nothing could be disgusting than the fact that we are being served with visual feasts that only hurt our hearts. Yes, why do a certain kind film stars and producers always see certain communities and races with the eyes of hatred? Without a sense of guilt, they cook up a series of cinematic theaters in the name of creativity and put those communities down, hurting their collective sentiment and pride. Are entertainment celebrities of modern times synonymous with sadism?
Most of the outrageous narratives and stereotyping are coming about from a “certain group” of showbiz actors and producers. Sadly, despite this, we naïve audiences heap our praises upon them. We waste our precious time watching their sleazes and load of prejudices. If one takes a close look at the proclivities and activities of those filmmakers, they have at times not only hurt the people’s sentiment but they have also “punctured” the very fabric of basic human values.
Well, very recently one such instance has made the news. A Bollywood actress Anushka Sharma, who has produced a web series Patal Lok, streaming from Amazon Prime, has earned the anger of most of the Nepali speaking Gorkha communities in India. What was very offensive to the Gorkha people of Northeast India is that one female character in that series has been demeaned and hurled at obscene terms in Nepali. Many organizations immediately went up in arms against this sexually racial slur. Not just that, one lawyers’ guild from West Bengal (India) immediately filed a suit against the producer. The situation has already got very charged up. Two Members of Parliament (MP) from West Bengal and Sikkim have shot letters to the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, New Delhi expressing a deep sense of displeasure and condemning the particular scene in the series. Another Congress MP from Assam – Mr. Gaurav Gogoi in his letter to the Minister vociferously berated the show and demanded that take the prompt action. The Assam MP has aptly underlined the unmatched contribution of the Gorkha communities to the country, particularly in nation-building. It seems the actress who only basks in the glamour world must be either not “aware” of the glorious history of Gorkhas or she has no sense of human sensitivity and compassion towards fellow citizens.
One scholar defense officer from Haryana says – “Prior to India’s independence the Gorkhas were the most trusted warriors to fight for the country besides their predominant presence now in every segment of defense service in the country. Their sacrifices while protecting the nation, particularly in India-Pakistan borders…, and also while fighting various wars, are far beyond imagination. Is it the price of being loyal and heroic fighters for the nation?” It appears the producer of the series is unable think beyond the immoral and hurtful obscenity? Why do they only carry racial prejudices against the people bearing the chinky/mongoloid feature, particularly from Northeast India. Is taking delight in hurting other communities and also tarnishing the image of the country before the global audience, not a perverse propensity?
This apart, the film series has come as a shocker to the Sikh and Brahmin communities as well. “Manjinder Singh Sirsa”, the former Akali Dal political leader and Delhi Sikh Gurudwara Prabandhak have also sent the legal notice to AMAZON Prime objecting to the contents and “idea behind this distasteful show”.
Nandkishore Gurjar, BJP MLA from Loni (Assembly constituency) of Uttar Pradesh, has as well formally lodged a complaint against Anushka Sharma for using his photo in the portion web-series without a prior permission. The MLA has taken exception to the fact that the AMAZON series depicts Gurjar community as criminals. He further pointed out that the series attempts to bring division and conflict among various castes in the country, such as the Jats of Punjab, Brahmins and Tyagis. BJP leaders also added that the usage of casteist slurs in the series are highly objectionable. Nandkishore concludes that the series is apparently intended to show the Bhartiya Janata Party, and the country as a whole, in the poor light while showing a terror-free posture of Pakistan.
Incidentally, do we know how many films that have been produced in the past 10 years have directly or indirectly hurt the sentiment of a number of communities or their culture in India? Of course, there are lots. Their cinematic themes and contents are intended to shown the cultural ethos of certain communities in a bad light. Yes, such theatrical entertainment often pointedly aimed at belittling the social norms and morals as well, which is very paradoxical. How come those actors and actresses lost in the wilderness of “debauchery” and a cheap kind of entertainment can dictate terms of morality to the society? There are a set of movies, including small screen serials, that have blatantly denigrated the “religious norms and moral practices” which are in existence since time immemorial.
But unfortunately, in most of the cases, the audiences get easily carried away by those filmmakers without knowing the ulterior motive behind their projects. Usually, all such sinister passion and intention of the showbiz industries soon get buried in the thick cover of “forgetfulness” and people again start to praise and idolize the same bunch of actors and actresses. Is it not awfully bizarre? Look at the production of the high-voltage film — “Padmavati” in 2018. The movie triggered unprecedented uprising and vandalism across the country for hurting the Rajput Communities. Very logically speaking, do any of our film stars like to be “reminded” about anything “ugly and hurtful” incidents concerning their own “parents” or ones they hold in high esteem? How could the Rajput community tolerate their “idol and motherly figure” PADMAVATI being projected as an object of lust who was shown being chased after by the despotic foreign invader Alauddin Khilji?
Similarly, films like Slumdog Millionaire, Inshallah Football, India’s Daughter… were produced only to put the country to shame, or to question the sovereignty of the nation bringing division among the different communities. How surprising, the elite people can stoop to look for ways to malign the country of their births!
More shocking — just a week back a comedian Surleen Kaur has demonstrate her unashamed indecency. In one of her shows, she linked the much-respected spiritual organization – ISKCON with pornography. The religious organization has already filed the suit against the comedian. Just think seriously what kind of future do we expect if such things are allowed and we continue to “clap and giggle” to their tune. Of course, it is difficult to watch films/shows these days together with family members.
True, showbiz prospers and thrives on the support of millions of audiences. But phew, we get in return, if not only nauseating sleazes and profanity to mislead our youths, all toxicity that only goes to corrode the sanctity of our society and its treasured values.
Lastly, the fun and entrainment at the cost of social humiliation, and disrespect to any community should not be tolerated at any cost. People are not a dead log to consume whatever put forth for commercial gains; they are human beings. They have enough good senses of differentiating between love and hatred, and good and bad. So, no film producer/director should serve the outrageous entrainment on their platters and thus mislead the society and “contaminate” the sanctity of Indian households and the mindset of our youths. The vulgar ambition of Indian showbiz is only posing a serious threat to the nation and its culture.
A Shillong-based writer and researcher, Salil Gewali is best known for his research-based work entitled ‘Great Minds on India’ which has earned worldwide appreciations. Translated into Twelve languages, his book has been prefaced by a world-acclaimed NASA Chief scientist – Dr. Kamlesh Lulla of Houston, USA.