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India’s #MeToo start of wrong practice: BJP MP backs Nana Patekar

The #MeToo movement is not a man versus woman debate, says Bollywood’s leading actress Deepika Padukone, who feels it is a matter of voices being raised in favour of right over wrong.

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It has finally arrived in India, engulfing the entire entertainment and media industry. It spread virally in October 2017 as a hashtag (#MeToo) used on social media in an attempt to demonstrate the widespread prevalence of sexual assault and harassment, especially in the workplace. The campaign has been one powerful event which helped a lot of women come out and speak about sexual harassments they have faced in their lives.

Now the movement in India has gathered storm since the big revelation by Bollywood actress Tanushree Dutta on senior actor Nana Patekar. Historically, The phrase “Me too” was tweeted by Milano around noon on October 15, 2017, and had been used more than 200,000 times by the end of the day, and tweeted more than 500,000 times by October 16. On Facebook, the hashtag was used by more than 4.7 million people in 12 million posts during the first 24 hours. The platform reported that 45% of users in the United States had a friend who had posted using the term.

This phrase was used to tell the world about the extend of sexual harassment faced by women everyday. It became the platform for the victims of sexual assault or harassment to get their fear and anger out, To tell the world that victims were not at all faulty but those shameless men were.

Describing the #MeToo movement in India as the beginning of a “wrong practice”, The Bharatiya Janata Party MP ‘Udit Raj’ on october 09, 2018 supported actor Nana Patekar and questioned actress Tanushree Dutta for speaking up after a decade. The #MeToo campaign is essential but what is the meaning of accusing someone of sexual harassment after 10 years? After years how can it be possible to verify the facts of the events? It must also be considered that it can ruin the image of the person who has been accused. It is the beginning of a wrong practice, the BJP (MP).

His remarks came after Tanushree in an interview in September, in the same context and sexual harassment of women in Bollywood industry and its idustries, spoke out of her personal experience at the hands of Nana Patekar on the set of “Horn ‘OK’ Pleassss” in 2008.

Last week, Tanushree also filed a written complaint on the same at the Oshiwara police station here. “Nana Patekar’s behaviour was inappropriate towards me, he was on the set despite (the fact) his work in the song was over. He grabbed me by the arm and pushed me towards him around on the pretext of teaching me how to dance,” read one part of the complaint.

Read Also, #MeToo movement not about gender, it’s about right over wrong: Deepika

On his part, Nana has consistently denied the accusation. In 2008 too, he had held a press conference to dismiss the allegations. Last week, on being confronted by the media, he said he had answered the questions about it 10 years ago. “Jhooth toh jhooth hi hai (a lie is a lie),” Nana said.

Meanwhile, Deepika and actor Ranveer Singh, who made a joint appearance at the 16th Hindustan Times Leadership Summit, were asked to comment on the raging #MeToo movement in Bollywood. She said: “For me, the MeToo movement is not about gender. It’s about the victory of right over wrong. So anyone who faces any sort of discrimination or any sort of abuse, I think we as a people must support that person. It’s not about a woman or a man or female vs male, let’s not get confused in that conversation.”

Consequently, there are plenty of men that are apprehensive about interacting with, helping or mentoring women for fear of loss of employment due to false accusations. Since men still occupy the top few percentiles of professionals in a majority of professions, the lack of men willing to mentor women would be a major disadvantage that women would face. And whining about “misogyny” wouldn’t help things either.

The nature of men and women is what is on trial in this movement, not the individuals who actually did wrong. For every man who mistreated a woman, there is a woman who cheated on a man who was trying to honor her and did the cheating with a guy who was only using her for sex. In the months since, government organizations and advocacy groups , have worked to meet the heightened demand spurred by #MeToo.

Last Updated on: October 10, 2018, First Published on October 09, 2018.

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