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It’s Beyond Ridiculous what the Indian Media has done to Sridevi!

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It’s beyond ridiculous what we have done to Sridevi. The coverage and all those interpretations of how she died are shocking. Channels flashing ‘alcohol ne lee Sridevi Ki life’ and then those getting graphics over ‘reconstructing her death’ are just in such poor taste.

Reporters inside bathtubs and backgrounds to anchors styled as bathrooms – what’s inspiring this circus?

It is most pathetic that people on TV discussion rooms are casting aspersions on her personality, what she did and how she maintained herself. Whether she was on Botox injections or she was anorexic. Whether diets lead to death or she was drinking too much. We have unleashed a new wave of journalism which knows no moral boundaries.  At another level it also reeks of what filters we put on women while reporting on them.

This is one of India’s top actors who died in unfortunate circumstances but what’s this moral lens on her lifestyle and her drinking? What exactly are we implying here? Why is a sensational actor reduced to finger pointing and presumptuous media and moral police?

The night after she died people on WhatsApp groups, many women too have been doing nothing but talking of her diet and her lifestyle. And what ‘came with it’ and if she was ‘calling for it’. Pray tell me this isn’t slut shaming? What is it then? Now that the reports say she drowned and was inebriated we are going to question every woman who drinks? And go to the extent of calling Sridevi a drunkard? The society makes enough of a deal of women who drink, then you have a minister who disgracefully mocks beer drinking women and now people will tell others to think before they drink because this happened to Sridevi.

It’s terrible on two counts – one that Sridevi’s death has become about drinking to death which it positively wasn’t. And then all other women will be tested on this use-case. Whether dead or alive there is reason for all to be lapped up in this dialogue to disgust.

There has to be a limit in what we consume in media.

Sridevi united India in death but she now unites media in disgust of how low we can get. And the media needs to know where to draw the line. You don’t go up to the relatives of the dead in an attack and stick a mic in their face and ask them how they feel. You don’t bitch out women for their obsession for looking great and eating less. Nor do you cast aspersions on people’s choices. You don’t turn moral police. Moreover you don’t dissect and mock an accident and reconstruct it on tv. You don’t do any WhatsApp forwards that curse Sridevi for her choices. Media in all forms has to know where to draw a line. Sensationalism may rise your TRPs but it will be your fall from grace eventually.

For me watching this play out is tragic at many levels. As women, stereotypes kill us when we are alive and it hits at us even in death.

The views expressed are author’s own.

Also Read: Sensationalizing Sridevi’s Death is a New Low for Indian News Channels