Continuing her penchant for doing women-centric films, Jyothika will be next be seen in the Tamil film Kaatrin Mozhi. Jyothika’s husband and popular actor Suriya released a poster of the film on Twitter, on the eve of Independence Day. According to some news reports, the film is a Tamil remake of Vidya Balan starrer Tumhari Sulu. In the poster, Jyothika is seen carrying the Ten Commandments set in stone in her hands, but these are for women.

This poster has grabbed a lot of attention on the social media. And these commandments are indeed food for thought. Hopefully, it will spark a long overdue conversation on gender and equality among common folks.

Not often do you come across a film poster which intends to strike up a conversation around women empowerment.

Which is probably why Kaatrin Mozhi’s poster has grabbed nationwide attention, breaking the barriers of language. As shown in the English version of the poster, the ten commandments put the spotlight on numerous issues which women face in our country, due to their gender.

SOME TAKEAWAYS

  • The poster of actor Jyothika’s next film Kaatrin Mozhi features her carrying the Ten Commandments for women.
  • The Tamil film will supposedly be a remake of Vidya Balan starrer Tumhari Sulu.
  • It is a rarity in India that film posters put across messages of gender equality.
  • It would be a significant achievement if this poster can start a conversation on gender equality among people.

Thou shall wear what you want. Thou shall eat first if you want. Thou shall not turn the other cheek if your husband hits you. Thou shall do what you love. Thou shall be fat if you want. Thou shall ask your husband to share household duties. Thou shall earn, give and spend as you want. Thou shall not say yes, when you mean no. Thou shall speak freely. Thou shall know that all men and women are equal.

These commandments touch on issues both in your face and obscure. Like the daily subtle misogyny which women face, such as spending their earnings as per the husband’s wishes, or holding their words back, or waiting for the elders and male members to eat first, before sitting down for a meal. Then there are the much graver issues like domestic violence, consent, body shaming and moral policing.

As the last commandment rounds it up, the issue of gender equality is multifaceted.

People need to recognise how oppression isn’t just domestic violence or the matter of consent. Beliefs such as “women should do all household chores” leads to “women shouldn’t give precedence to their professional lives because they have duties at home.” Or how, “women should not argue with elders and their husbands” leads to “a wife should not disobey a husband’s sexual demands.”

Men and women both need to discuss these issues. It is a long overdue conversation which needs to take over our homes, our streets and even our bedrooms. And if Kaatrin Mozhi’s poster helps to start it, then it is a great achievement. The issue of gender equality and misogyny may not get solved by this conversation, but it will be a stepping stone. No initiative or effort made in the positive direction, be it even a movie poster, is unimportant.

Picture Credit : Hindustan Times

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Yamini Pustake Bhalerao is a writer with the SheThePeople team, in the Opinions section. The views expressed are the author’s own.

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