If minority community says there's intolerance in society, listen to it: Swara Bhasker

Swara said if a particular community feels that something bad is happening to them, the privileged ones must not dismiss it.

Published: 12th October 2019 11:48 PM  |   Last Updated: 12th October 2019 11:48 PM   |  A+A-

Swara Bhasker (Photo | Instagram)


MUMBAI: Actor Swara Bhasker says it's time mainstream film industries start being responsible in how they represent social issues, including those faced by minorities.

Swara said if a particular community feels that something bad is happening to them, the privileged ones must not dismiss it.

"I think it's time that mainstream Bollywood and other language industries begin to be a little sensitive and responsible in how they represent issues. Issues, that may be aren't personal to us. Just because an experience is not my own doesn't mean it's not legitimate. It's so basic, something so easy to forget," the actor said.

She was speaking at the India Film Project where the poster of her upcoming, "Sheer Qorma", a love story of two Muslim women, was launched.

The film, directed by Faraz Arif Ansari, also stars Divya Dutta and Shabana Azmi.

Swara said same is the case for religious identity, caste identity, sexual identity and even gender identity.

"At so many levels, we all must be privileged in our own ways that just because we haven't had an experience we feel 'no man this doesn't happen or no this much doesn't happen.'

If a girl is saying she freezes when a bike passes next to her on a empty street, listen to her.

You may not have felt it because you're not a girl.

"If a minority community is saying that there's intolerance in the society, then listen to it, you may not have felt it because you're not from minority community.

If a Dalit is saying, 'I feel scared that I will be lynched,' listen to him.

Just because it hasn't happened to you doesnt mean it hasn't happened to someone else.

Similarly if queer people say, 'We feel discriminated against and we don't belong,' listen to it."

At the session, the actor was asked why are influential voices within the industry reluctant to speak on topical issues.

Swara said public figures "are more vulnerable to a lot of destructive negativity" and if people want celebrities to speak up, a healthy environment must be created first.

"If we want our public figures, people with legacies, to speak out and take responsible sides, then we have to become the society which doesn't punish people doing that."

Swara claimed that she lost out on four brands endorsements and three events the day she campaigned for candidates for Lok Sabha elections.

"I am not saying, 'oh I am so great' but if you're going to make the stakes so high, that a superstar can talk about a dinner conversation and then face so much flak or another superstar can give his opinion and his car can be stoned on a shoot, then how can we expect people with legacies or public profiles to actually risk their lives, families, careers? "Why should they? We need to ask ourselves questions as a society.

Even with 'Sheer Qorma', I am 100 percent sure it is going to create a debate.

I am being polite when I say 'debate.' "

The actor said as artistes and people with voices, "we have to take our conviction seriously."

"We have to respect our own conviction. Sometimes we pay a price for it, hopefully not a heavy one, but sometime in life you have to stand up for your conviction.

Hopefully we will move to a society where we are not scared to stand up for our convictions and that's the effort of the film as well." 

Stay up to date on all the latest Entertainment Hindi news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp