The Rajnikanths of Indian journalism who believe in bullying people into believing what they feel is right by shouting at the top of their voice want us to believe that the BBC documentary India’s Daughter is bad journalism. The Indian government, reiterating their commitment to ‘protect the daughters of India’ (beti bachao) every now and then, want us to believe the film on the 16th December brutal gang rape case is against India and therefore they don’t want us to see it. To their delight some of the great Indian puppets, the blind worshippers of their political gods are out in the street burning effigies of the BBC. The social media is abounding with posts and links on how bad the ‘whites’ are to make such a ‘bad journalistic work’ against India.
As I had serious doubts on the intellect of the people who think words like Bombay need to be censored, I did not follow their dictate and watched the documentary. It gave rise to only one emotion- disgust. But this disgust was not directed towards the film or the filmmaker though it is not a great piece of work.
What disgusted me at the very first place was the remorseless arrogance of the rapist who squarely blames the woman for being raped. But that is not surprising. Thousands of rapists and ‘would have been’ rapists (who never got their chance) think that way and it includes politicians, lawyers, doctors and even teachers among others. After the rapist it is the turn of the two notorious lawyers M.L. Sharma and A.P. Singh. The way they defended the rapists and maligned the victim was much beyond the similar tactics usually adopted by lawyers to defend their clients. The two lawyers have crossed all boundaries of humanity in justifying the brutality in a cool matter of fact way. The spine chilling comments made by them are enough to put them on the same pedestal as that of the mindless criminals they are defending. Apart from the blatant justifications of the crime the two lawyers also make casual comments reflecting their almost pathological male chauvinism. At one point M.L. Sharma says, “…. woman means I immediately put sex in his eyes.” He then goes on to say things like, “In our culture there is no place for a woman”. These are just some of the shocking comments made by Sharma. But A.P Singh shows a much more beastly nature with his proud declaration that he would have burned his daughter or sister with petrol in a farm house if she dared to have a pre-marital affair.
We may be uncomfortable with these statements. We may feel ashamed of the mindset of some Indians that the film exposes. But it is a fact that most of the people in our society think that way. It is a country where politicians can get away with calling upon men of particular communities to rape women of another community. It is a country where the film censor boards object to artistically depicted nudity of confident women but has no problem clearing films showing ideal Indian men ( the hero ) punishing and teaching lessons to unruly and arrogant ( read independent) women to turn them into ‘Adarsh Bhartiya Abla Naari’. So what is the problem with this documentary that mercilessly exposes the sick mentality of some people?
The Modi government’s response to the film is also much more disgusting then the comments made by the rapist and his lawyers. The documentary tries to explore the mindset behind such heinous crimes instead of just focusing on the perpetrators of the 16th December rape. But the people running the Indian government probably failed to understand the meaning of the film. Or probably the government is not comfortable with the fact that the criminals have raised their fingers at the politicians who are guilty of similar crimes. Whatever be the reason, government which can go extra miles to clear a film like MSG to uphold the ‘freedom of expression’ of a notorious godman Gurmeet Ram Rahim is now seen blocking a documentary which is an eye opener to most of the Indians.
The merits and demerits of the documentary are not beyond debate. But banning the film is a ridiculous decision. No one in his right mind, unless he is a misogynist, imbecile or and anti Indian, can oppose the airing of this film. This film is neither derogatory to India nor to Indian women as some people are bullying us into believing. Despite the sermons by the Rajnikanths of Indian journalism and the self styled custodians of Indian psyche not to watch it, every Indian must watch this film. Despite being a mediocre documentary the raw and shocking nature of the content makes it a must watch because It provides a much needed shock treatment to the masses.
[ FRIED EYE DISCLAIMER – The opinions and the language used is of the writer alone. It does not reflect the stand and ideals of Fried Eye Media in any way. ]