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Sona Mohapatra penned an open letter to Sony TV after they re-introduced #MeToo accused Anu Malik as a judge on Indian Idol. Here’s everything you need to know.
Being “as feminist a feminist can be,” Sona Mohapatra bashed Sony TV in an open letter for Anu Malik’s return on Indian Idol.
Why? Because Anu Malik, very infamous after the #MeToo Movement, had been named by four women for sexual harassment. These included popular singers Neha Bhasin and Shweta Pandit.
The composer didn’t even spare Danice D’Souza, ex Indian Idol Producer. Previously removed from the jury of Indian Idol, Sony TV decided to re-introduce the proven pervert as the judge, again.
Questioning the hypocrisy of the media of India, Sona Mohapatra calls out a lot of celebrities for their cowardice. Sonu Nigam was found saying, “You accused him without any proof; let’s accept that too. Had he (Anu Malik) wanted to say anything, he could have said a lot. But he did not.”
Sona Mohapatra retorted to this,“Do you expect women to carry strap recording devices and spy cams with them everywhere?”
Sonu Nigam ended up calling her husband, Ram Sampath
and asking him to “keep [her] in check.” Is Mohapatra some kind of a wild animal who needs to be kept in check? What has the world come to where women strong and bold enough to speak out are being asked to be caged and tamed? He also pointed her out to be “a wife vomiting in the media” and Sona Mohapatra didn’t hesitate pointing out the misogyny in his
Is the only source of identity for a woman linked with the man in her life, whether that’d be her father or her husband?
She scathingly extended her criticism to Vishal Dadlani. Dadlani had condemned the governance of Narendra Modi for not taking any strict action against rape cases. Mohapatra hammered Dadlani for not being able to “walk the talk” and not striving for what he claimed he stood for.
She asks “The dignity and safety of women should mean more to you than a few extra million in the bank?” Dadlani questioned the validity of the accusation of multiple women. Mohapatra’s repartee was a question, “What evidence do we show to courts about molestation and sexual predation?”
Sona Mohapatra broadcasted Aditya Narayan and Neha Kakkar to be spineless cowards. Being the anchor and a co-judge of the show, respectively, they “slither around, crying and grinning, making money.” They didn’t have the guts to speak out against the nonchalance of Sony TV towards such a large number of women’s grievances.
Ironically, here we have a woman supporting Anu Malik! Singer of popular songs such as “Aawara Bhawren” and “Chali Chali Phir Hawa Chali,” Hema Sardesai claims that “there is a great Artiste in [Anu Malik] who respected true talent and who respectfully gave [Sardesi] songs on merit alone.” And as a justification for his acts, she has indirectly put the blame on the accusers as taking part in the dirty action, as “it takes two hands to clap”, in her own words.
Taking aside the opinions of Sardesai, Mohapatra is giving India a reality check by saying that it can take only a “Nirbhaya level tragedy” for us to wake up. And unfortunately, the anger and passion is not permanent. It does cause a havoc in the hearts of men and women alike, but that fades with riots, silent marches and property destruction. To preserve the energy and channelling it into something greater is never an option in our very patriarchal mindset, whose greatest example can be Sony TV.
Sona Mohapatra was asked to leave her designation as a judge from the reality show Sa Re Ga Ma Pa because of her rebellion against Anu Malik. The singer’s comments against Malik caused Indian Idol to generate more TRPs giving them more publicity.
Mohapatra was called a troublemaker. But for what? Speaking out against the torture done to her and many other women.
She concludes the letter on an optimistic note, with faith that there are still others who are brave enough to stand up for her and for themselves. The fight is not over. And we, as feminists, stand with her, and against all the oppressors who have made the lives of women a living hell.
Striving to make a world where women can also see what Delhi, or any place at night, without being afraid of being another Nirbhaya case, we won’t shut up either.
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An English literature student with a love for reading and writing, and who chills tucked
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