Kangana Ranaut is in the news again. But this time the gutsy belle does more than battle Karni Sena or speak of a silly ex. The Manikarnika actress spells out her own story of harassment both sexual and otherwise on set. Her words are candid as ever as she elucidates the experience that was daunting and humiliating going on to give us her take on the #MeToo movement.
“Harassment happens on many levels. So many times on sets, I wasn’t sexually harassed, but some people had ego issues. I was harassed on many other fronts. It wouldn’t come under #MeToo but it was still harassment,” said Kangana.
“Making me wait on set for six hours. Willingly giving me wrong call time to make me stand! Always giving me the wrong set of dates so I’m missing out on opportunities and then canceling the schedule last minute by these heroes!” reveals Kangana.
However, the list of woes seems endless. “Ganging up on me and not inviting me to film events, launching trailers without me. Then someone else dubbed for me without even telling me! This is violating the basic right of taking permission from an actor,” she exclaimed according to NDTV.
She shared her two cents on the #MeToo movement, reports DNA. “People will think twice now because of certain things that were reported. Earlier, everyone knew about some five-six names, but no one was doing anything about it. Today, they are out there exposed. Though that may not seem enough, it has some significance.”
The actor believes the movement has made men in the industry fearful. “People are scared, obviously and they should be.
“Men are scared in the industry. This isn’t going to stop. This will continue till we really go into the root cause of it because essentially it’s a patriarchal society which is extremely chauvinistic,” she shared.
She believes we need to make a change. “All the talks of ‘what if women lose work’ should stop. I believe there’s no life without dignity. You shouldn’t worry about raising your voice,” Kangana added.
The 31-year-old actress petitions for strict rules to make women feel safer on film sets. “When anyone raises concern, people-director, producer or anyone-need to solve it. We need to become more sensitive about these things.
“On film sets there have to be strict rules and strict action should be taken. Things can’t be solved on a personal level or behind closed doors. Things should be taken to authority and immediate action is the need of the hour.
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That being said, she expects the victims to take a stand-
“Expecting another person to make sure that I am safe is not the right attitude. If I had thought like that at 16, God knows where I would be, maybe I wouldn’t have been alive.”
She voices her thoughts about the psyche of the perpetrators. “A criminal mostly knows he is committing a crime. Even the richest people shoplift, they know it, yet they do it for the thrill of it. When you set the rules and make a person aware of the fact that this is violating another person’s fundamental right, if that person is a criminal, he wants to do that very thing. If initially, it was a sexual urge, it’s become a mental urge and he wants to corner the young girl in the dark on the street!”
However, the lady has a darker and more personal saga to share-
“I was pinched on my butt in the middle of a group and that person was right there, looking at me!”
Kangana further adds, “It was not even sexual, it was like ‘I did exactly what I was not supposed to do’. And looking me in the eye like ‘what are you going to do now?’ So, what do you expect? I think somewhere we should tell the girls that there are a few rules. Don’t say ‘maybe,’ when you want to say ‘no’, it’s important.”
Indeed, Ranaut embodies fearlessness. Here’s what she thinks women in a similar situation as her must do. “Your safety doesn’t mean you can do Taekwondo and karate. It also means you go to someone who can save you; it may be a teacher, an uncle you trust, a friend, or the Mumbai Police, or go to the media, find a journalist and expose them!
This is exactly why she stands against victim blaming. Ranaut says-
“So, to tell them this and then get severely trolled for it, is horrible. And the worst part is that women are trolling women.
The outspoken actress’s candid confessions are disturbing at best and appalling at worst. However, they do make you wonder the actual number of (hitherto silent) #metoo victims must be! While not everyone has stepped forward, we do hope B-town becomes a much safer work environment for every acting aspirant!