Bollywood Films Need to Stop Glorifying Stalking: Nandita Das

#TalkingStalking | Nandita Das on why it is important to call out Bollywood for normalising stalking in films.

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Tera peecha naa chodo soniye bhej de chahe jail mein’,’ this is an old Bollywood song that loosely translates to "I will keep following you even if I am sent to prison".

What does art do, what does cinema do? It subliminally goes into our consciousness. And when you reinforce the fact that stalking is ok, and that a no means a yes, you are dis-empowering the woman.
Nandita Das, Filmmaker

Nandita Das believes that Bollywood should be more reflective and self conscious while making movies because Indians take movies very seriously.

In movies, we see men following women even when the woman has said no multiple times. The man sings and dances, slaps her a couple of times and then everything is ok. Such depiction is extremely problematic.
Namita Bhandare, Senior journalist

Since stalking is usually the first step towards a larger crime, The Quint has kickstarted a campaign, called #TalkingStalking, in a bid to break the silence around it.

Make Stalking a Non-Bailable Offence

Do you know that stalking is a bailable offence under Indian criminal law? This allows stalkers to get bail without serious scrutiny, often putting victims at risk of facing acid attacks, rapes and sometimes even murder.

According to the National Crime Records Bureau:

  • An estimated 6,266 cases of stalking were reported in 2015, up from 4,699 in 2014.
  • In 2014, 85 percent of the accused in stalking cases were given bail before the investigation ended.
  • In 2015, 83 percent of the accused in stalking cases were given bail before the investigation ended.
  • 60 percent of all accused were men between 18-30 years of age, while 2 percent were juveniles between 16-18 years of age.

This is why The Quint has launched a petition along with Varnika Kundu and Dr Shashi Tharoor to appeal to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh to make stalking a non-bailable offence. Sign our petition here.

We’re Listening

If you are being stalked or know someone who is being stalked, do reach out to us. You can email us at talkingstalking@thequint.com or drop in a message at +91 9999008335.

Let’s break the silence together.

Cameraperson: Athar Rather
Reporter: Nishtha Gautam
Producer: Garvita Khybri

(The Quint, in association with BitGiving, has launched a crowdfunding campaign for an 8-month-old who was raped in Delhi on 28 January 2018. The baby girl, who we will refer to as 'Chhutki', was allegedly raped by her 28-year-old cousin when her parents were away. She has been discharged from AIIMS hospital after undergoing three surgeries, but needs more medical treatment in order to heal completely. Her parents hail from a low-income group and have stopped going to work so that they can take care of the baby. You can help cover Chhutki's medical expenses and secure her future. Every little bit counts. Click here to donate.)

(The Quint is available on Telegram. For handpicked stories every day, subscribe to us on Telegram)

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