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Bollywood fans are spread throughout the globe, regardless of the nationalities and race. The vibrant colors, storylines, action moves and the setting in which they take place somehow captivates its audience and keeps them loyal. However, there are also downsides to it.
Let’s talk about how mainstream Bollywood normalizes stalking and sexual harassment. You know what type of mainstream I’m talking about here. The one in which a male develops a crush on the female protagonist and even after the female rejects the male, he keeps on pursuing her against her wishes. However, in the end, the female ends up falling in love with her stalker, as her stalker does not back out, having no effect on the female rejecting him.
Now it’s all portrayed in such a fashion, that the audience enjoys it, realizing nothing wrong with the storyline. Bollywood is famous for producing films like these, and they’re quite popular too! But by doing so, they’re also normalizing stalking.
Coming to sexual harassment, we all know how explicit Bollywood has become. While some of those actions does include the consent of the heroine, others don’t. I’m talking about the early days of the couple’s romance. Where the male is still pursuing the female. Often times, the hero will hold the heroine’s hand or hug her forcefully. But instead of getting outraged, the female protagonist just giggles and runs away, shying. In real life, however, the male would be receiving a resounding slap, am I not right?
You may argue that this is all for entertainment purposes, and should not be taken so seriously. But take a moment and think about what effect this is having on the younger generation and even this generation? Many kids, especially in India, grow up seeing Bollywood movies. Kids pick up a lot of things and some of them stay with them throughout their life. If they constantly see the male aggressively pursuing the female, while getting creepier by the minute and instead of perceiving it as a bad thing, the kid’s family is actually laughing at those scenes and songs? What impact does this have on the kid’s mind? He thinks it’s perfectly normal to do that in real life, paying no heed to the fact that the woman has said no the first time around. But to still stalk her until she falls in love with him. To touch her or lightly brush his body against her own, and think of it as romantic, and not sexual harassment.
And since Bollywood is spread throughout the globe, it’s affecting all the younger generations out there. This could be one of the reasons for the alarming increase of rape cases in India. It’s time Bollywood stops this, and instead make movies which are positively inclined. Make people realize the power of the word NO and empower women. To start objectifying women and start treating them like a vital part of the society.