Mar 062018

Censor board member, actress and activist Vani Tripathi Tikoo said that objectification of women in films must never be encouraged

Vani Tripathi Tikoo. Pic/YouTube
Vani Tripathi Tikoo. Pic/YouTube

Censor board member, actress and activist Vani Tripathi Tikoo said that objectification of women in films must never be encouraged. As a member of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC), does she watch films from a woman’s point of view or in a strictly professional way?

Vani told IANS: “Women objectification is non-negotiable. No matter what, you cannot show vulgar and cheap elements of women on-screen in a film that is reaching out to thousands of people.

“Whether it is certifying or negotiating on the release of a film, the projection of emotions always depends on its intention — whether it is titillation, perversion or addressing a larger picture through the film.

“For instance, ‘NH10’, a film that shows violence, rape and it is full of gore. But the film addresses a larger issue, a slice of reality. Therefore, that film was released. However, in any film, if the gaze is of perversion, it is not acceptable. If the context of the narration of the film lends itself to explicit language, I will judge it in the context of the film.”

Citing examples of some other movies, she said “Whether it is ‘Pad Man’ or ‘Pink’, both the films are directed by men. Even though ‘Pad Man’ talks about menstruation, no point in the film would one feel uncomfortable or cheap. The same goes for ‘Pink’, where some of the dialogues are bold and made the audience think about the issue, but there is no vulgarity.”

Vani was present at the Ficci Frames 2018, where she was a part of a panel discussion on ‘Against all odds: Women leaders re-visit their journey’.

As violence against women continues to be on the rise, are powerful women in the country doing enough — or at least the expected — for the issue?

“I think women have so much to do, but they can only resolve an issue within the limitation of the given power, so please, before expecting, one should understand the position. Yes, the picture is changing, but from both sides — women participation is increasing at the workplace, and the same time, sexual violence is also increasing.

“While the expectation from a powerful woman is to give justice to all the women out there, we have to understand that it is not just about women standing for justice for women but for all, irrespective of gender. Unjust is unjust.”

She also believes women achievers must mentor more women to follow the path of empowerment.

“There was an education campaign that said, ‘Each one, teach one’. I would say, each one teach ten, so that the future generation will be inspired. That is when the change comes.”

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