Actress-activist Shabana Azmi believes the projection of women’s sensuality in Bollywood needs to change as there is a thin line between sensual and vulgar.
The 65-year-old “Neerja” star does not want “morality brigade” to interfere with the working of film industry but feels filmmakers should monitor it themselves.
“The way sensuality is projected depends on the way camera moves, not on how you danced or the clothes you wore. I feel filmmakers and artists should do self regulation on how they want to present sensuality.
“We don’t want to give this in the hands of morality brigade. It is a very fine line which we have to take care of,” Azmi said at the NDTV- L’Oreal Paris Women of Worth 2016 conclave.
Azmi, who has brought to life many path-breaking characters, has serious objection to the way actresses are captured in item numbers. However, she did mention that not only movies but people getting entertained from them are also responsible for the way they perceive what is shown on-screen.
“These days a lot has been spoken about item numbers. I have my own reservations regarding it. I think if a top-notch actress is singing ‘Main toh tandoori murgi hun yaar… Gatka le saiyaan alcohol se’ it is very serious thing and it gives inviting signals.
“The song is created by a group of people. But thousands of people watched it and loved it. They saw their six-year-old children performing on it. Is it only the responsibility of Bollywood?,” she said.
The actress said that such special tracks are not the way to celebrate sensuality of a woman. It is more of commodification and surrender to male gaze.
Azmi was a part of discussion curated by journalist Ravish Kumar. Lawyer-activist Vrinda Grover, social scientist Shiv Vishwanathan, Kalpana Vishwanath and Kalilkesh Singh Deo were the other panelists.