Dear Indian Media, Let’s Stop Giving Rakhi Sawant’s Inanity A Platform
We as viewers have long stopped taking Rakhi Sawant seriously. One can hardly believe a syllable that comes out of her mouth. Yet Sawant continues to draw huge press, every time she makes a public statement. The result is that she gets away with saying the crassest and most offensive things on national television. And despite knowing that Sawant’s inanity knows no bounds, the Indian media keeps handing the mic to her. In a recently held press conference, Sawant put our endurance to test again by delivering the most cringe-worthy off-screen performance ever.
Sawant also got away with alleging that Tanushree Dutta is a lesbian, who raped her years ago. Surrounded by press people and a sea of mics, Sawant, dressed in a saree and covering her head with a pallu mind you, basked in the unnecessary attention that was being bestowed on her.
— Bollywood Hungama (@Bollyhungama) October 24, 2018
This piece of “news” was dumped upon us because in a previous conference Sawant had accused Dutta of levying false allegations against Nana Patekar and maligning his image. The result was that Dutta slapped a 10-crore civic and criminal defamation case on Sawant, as reported by the Times Of India. In retaliation, Sawant called a press conference, again. And then she went on to mock the #MeToo movement, survivors of rape and our collective intelligence in general.
Sawant called Dutta a lesbian, a man on the inside and a rapist.
If you are of the belief that one must take every allegation levied under #MeToo movement in India seriously, then Sawant gives you your very own version of Sophie’s choice. But then our past experience and the sheer theatrics in this video are enough for anyone to question Sawant’s sincerity and intentions. This is the woman who few months ago claimed that using nose clippers prevents clogging of arteries with kachra.
- Rakhi Sawant recently held a press conference where she alleged that Tanushree Dutta is a lesbian, who raped her years ago.
- Sawant is levying serious allegations like rape with the least possible amount of sincerity
- Dutta’s bravery was the kick which started the Indian #MeToo movement. Should we sit around and let Sawant soil her image?
- The best way to stop people like her from hurting #MeToo movement is to take the mic away from her.
Why does the press continue to give her so much airtime?
This woman is levying serious allegations like rape with the least possible amount of sincerity and all we do is laugh at her. She calls Dutta a lesbian, and a man on the inside. Her statement is, in fact, an insult to the LGBTQIA+ community.
Besides, rape and sexual harassment are very serious allegations. It has taken Indian women great strength to overcome years of suffering and shaming, to finally break their silence and name and shame predators out in the open.
On some level, we all owe it to the courage shown by Dutta. Her bravery was the kick which started the Indian #MeToo movement. Should we sit around and let Sawant soil her image? Why doesn’t Sawant’s mockery of #MeToo make the press and viewers angry?
This kind of mockery, even when it comes from Sawant, is unacceptable. But the best way to stop people like her from hurting #MeToo movement is to take the mic away from her. Do not give her the air time to take a dump on our morals and sensibilities. The responsibility of this lies on both the media and the viewers. Stop swarming her press conference. Stop putting out her sensational statements in the news. When she will have no takers, perhaps Sawant will understand that there is a limit to which you can exploit people’s tolerance.
Picture Credit: NDTV
Yamini Pustake Bhalerao is a writer with the SheThePeople team, in the Opinions section. The views expressed are the author’s own.