A video of Rajiv Ranjan Tiwari, a BJP leader from Bihar’s Gopalganj district, is doing the rounds on social media, in which he can be seen breaking a leg in the worst way possible with a female dancer. Reports claim that the video is an old one, shot originally in November at a wedding Tiwari attended and has only just surfaced on social media days later, going viral. In the video, this leader from the national ruling party can be seen contorting a cloth first into a lungi and then wrapping it around one of the female performers in various ways – around her waist, over her head, etc. – to the tunes of a Bollywood “item” number.
Now, while weddings and merrymaking are private affairs – as they should be, even for politicians – shouldn’t citizens of a country expect a certain degree of decorum from the leaders they have elected? Is behaviour as undignified as this becoming of those we have chosen to govern us? When leaders of the state, of the ruling party no less, are indulging in dances that thrive on objectifying women and treating them as “items” of pleasure meant to be touched inappropriately, then to what extent can we hope for women’s safety and equality to progress in India?
Watch the viral video here:
What Can We Expect From Citizens When Leaders Behave This Way?
It is shameful enough that videos like these, of political leaders, exist in the first place. But it becomes doubly disgraceful when they are made public. For starters, it brings to international attention the objectionable personal and social conduct of people of official stature in our country. Where does that place us as a power on the world map? Is it not a mockery of our administrative systems? Are leaders like Tiwari not enjoying their private affairs at the expense of an entire nation’s propriety?
Secondly, can this be termed enjoyment by any measure? If elected leaders themselves are attending social events where women have been hired for pleasure or entertainment, then what better can we expect from the scores of people who have brought them to power? Won’t such videos normalise the idea of women as a gender existing solely to cater to the male gaze?
Social Media Reacts To Tiwari’s Video
Social media users have not taken kindly to Tiwari’s dance video, as they shouldn’t. Several have called him out on his garish behaviour, saying that the citizens of India deserve better leadership than they are currently being given. Here are some reactions we rounded up for you:
— സഖാവ് کامریڈ ☭ (@varughese4) December 5, 2020
— Dr.Sangeetha Ramesh (@DrSangeethaRam2) December 5, 2020
Reveals their real character. https://t.co/oJq2jqTtBC
Views expressed are the author’s own.