This is not for the first time that Salman KhanÂ has landed himself in a controversy. Actually, heÂ is used to it. “˜Dabbang”™ Khan, as he is popularlyÂ known as among his fans, remains in newsÂ mostly either on the basis of his statements orÂ love affairs. Recently, Bhai issued such aÂ ludicrous remark, while promoting his filmÂ “˜Sultan,”™ that was opposed by one and manyÂ including a large section of the Hindi filmÂ industry. By saying, “I felt like a rape victimÂ while shooting the movie,” he broke millions ofÂ hearts of his die hard fans, industry colleaguesÂ and those women who considered him as a manÂ with a golden heart up till now. It”™s not at allÂ possible for a man to comprehend what a rapeÂ victim goes through. In addition, an actor’s hardÂ work during shooting should not be comparedÂ with a dastardly act of rape. In a civilized world,Â no one can even think about coming up withÂ such an illogical comparison. Then why SalmanÂ Khan went ahead with such a parallel?
It is really shocking for a man who had earlierÂ sought the death penalty for convicts ofÂ Delhi’s Nirbhaya Case, to come up with such aÂ comparison. We can easily assume that theÂ actor in not at all aware about the brutalityÂ involved in the ugly rape and what exactly theÂ victim undergoes. Probably no. So what did hisÂ recent statement actually mean? May be it is aÂ slip of tongue for the man.Â But how did this controversy come up?
It was recently during a talk with a journalist thatÂ Salman shared his busy shooting schedule forÂ his upcoming movie Sultan and also bared howÂ much hard he is working for the movie. It wasÂ at one point that he expressed how he used toÂ walk out of the ring, after the shoot, and used toÂ feel like a raped woman. Reason behind thisÂ insensitive remark could be the limitedÂ knowledge grasp over language and socialÂ values, as per my limited understanding. OurÂ actors have no idea what impact their cheap andÂ mean remarks can have. Some times BollywoodÂ stars make petty remarks in lighter vein whichÂ directly cause an impact on female identity andÂ dignity. Only a victim can understand what rapeÂ is all about. It is beyond any justification toÂ include it under freedom of expression that weÂ enjoy.
Actual problem is the environment where ourÂ stars grow up. Vulgar fun is also counted asÂ entertainment in their peer group. We have stillÂ not forgotten the AIB roast, where many of ourÂ Bollywood’s A-listers enjoyed at the sake ofÂ others in crude and filthy language. The generalÂ public is also to be blamed for it. Most of theÂ lyrics we find in Salman’s songs – “˜munniÂ badnam hui darling tere liye… mai to tanduriÂ murgi hu yaar gatkale saiyan alcohol se”™, “˜maiÂ karu to sala character dheela hai”™ – women areÂ being commodified.
Salman is not alone to be blamed for thisÂ objectification of women but even singers suchÂ as Honey Singh have drafted songs glorifyingÂ rape. A veteran leader of a political party wasÂ once heard saying one “˜tanchh maal”™ to his partyÂ members. Although he later apologized for it, theÂ issue does not end here. The world of IndianÂ advertisement, like its Western peer is also a bigÂ culprit. Shamefully, Salman didn’t even beg forÂ forgiveness on this matter yet. It was SalimÂ Khan, Salman’s father, who later apologized forÂ this.
It is sad that fans of Salman quicklyÂ forget everything and encourage him to performÂ more such gimmicks. BeingÂ responsible citizens of India we should criticizeÂ such irresponsible statements and acts so thatÂ no one finds the encouragement to repeat it all overÂ again.
TV Journalist/ Anchor @indiatvnews