Actor and filmmaker Pooja Bhatt has once again spoken out on the #MeToo campaign. The elder sister of actor Alia Bhatt has talked about how the movement encouraged women to speak up. She also stressed on the need for women to take up their battles legally and not go by the media trial. Here are a few important statements she made, as reported by PTI:
On not taking the case beyond social media:
“One should take names. One should file a case and take the person to court. Just ranting on a public platform with no thought towards the consequences, I think, is a bit too much. If a man has made an overture at you and is harassing you, there is a law that protects you. Ranting on Twitter and not backing it up with a police complaint (does not help)… I am not interested in a media trial”.
On facing harassment herself:
“It’s a fallacy, I have had my share. Which woman has not dealt with somebody putting their hand on the butt? When I used to go to school by train, I have got my butt pinched. But we were trained to take on that person. I felt I must talk about it as I represent courage and strength to the world. That time it was not considered fashionable to talk about it. I got a lot of flak for it”.
On how not many supported her then:
“Saif Ali Khan and John Abraham were a couple of few people who stood up for me. Everyone from Shekhar Suman to Ruby Bhatia said, ‘How can I talk about all this in public?’ For me, it was not about him or me, it was about something larger. We need to empower our women to speak”.
On being fortunate enough to not work in an ‘uncomfortable environment’:
“Ninety per cent of the crew that works with me is there since my childhood and which is why I do not want to work too much outside because the people I work with are as important for me as my role. For no amount of money or love will I work with people I do not trust. Casting couch does exist and it exists everywhere, when there is an exchange of power. If two adults decide to consent, who are we to judge that? It comes down to women’s will”.
On 90 percent of sexual abuse cases being domestic in nature:
“You are often told by people, ‘Let it be. Why talk about it as it will unnecessarily upset the power structure?’ You are afraid of being ostracised. When you speak the truth, you find yourself in a minority. “If you are not willing to be a lone wolf, keep your truth to yourself. If you want acceptance and your truths to be spoken, it is a slippery slope”.
On even men being harassed:
“Women can be equally vile, big bullies. It is unfair to paint every man with the same brush. There are decent men as well.” She says that both men and women need to work together for creating a safer environment. “If we have to win this war, we have to do it with men. It is not about women against men”.