The #BlackLivesMatter movement had a domino effect with several people opening up about racial discrimination against the people of color. However, while several B-town actors supported #BLM, it raised an important question about the color based discrimination that happens within the industry. In fact, actors Kangana Ranaut and Abhay Deol slammed the “woke Indian celebrities” for staying mum on the issues that happen in the country.
Speaking of which, fashion designer Masaba Gupta recently voiced her concerns about racial discrimination in Indian society. She emphasized on how people should focus on ‘brown lives matter’ as dark-skinned people face a lot of discrimination in our country. She was quoted saying by Hindustan Times, “Can we first take care of our ‘brown lives matter’ in India and then worry about the US?”
“I find it bizarre that racism that is done so far away from home it is creating such an uproar. Look at the kind of racism people who are dark-skinned in our country has to face. The thing with us Indians is that if you say it ‘aise hi mazaak mein’, you think it will pass. In our culture, the idea of being fair-skinned is related to success. And we think that is the truth.”
Accusing the industry of colorism, she was quoted saying, “Unfortunately, the beauty, fashion and Bollywood industry are to be blamed. How many times do you hear that you have to be fair-skinned to land a certain role or an advertisement? It is easier for us to speak because it is not happening in our backyard.”
She further shared her personal experience of how she was discriminated against due to her skin color as a child, “I had a really tough time in school. Everyone used to be like, ‘oh my god! Why do you keep talking about it? It is not a big deal’. The fact of the matter is that it is a big deal. I grew up thinking I was inferior to white-skinned people. And as a child, if you are conditioned like this, it becomes a part of your upbringing that you believe that probably because I look like this, I won’t get anywhere in life.”
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Two years back at Sonam’s reception – made a saree blouse with a shrug for us big boned ladies with arms & all. I danced so hard that night…I had a bruise & then ate a meal for four in a corner without looking up. @rheakapoor think we discussed I still missed some of the mains. 😀 Crushed Foil print Saree – @houseofmasaba
Speaking about how we can bring a change, she said, “I believe we are a country where we think something is going to change when a Bollywood star or a cricketer comes out and says, ‘you don’t have to fair-skinned to be successful’. We don’t have any other heroes in our country. I am a designer nobody is going to give a damn about me. I am talking about actors who are veterans and if they come out and speak about it, then things might change.”
We definitely agree with Masaba. No child should ever feel left out because of their skin color. What do you think? Tell us.