KR Meera Says That The Dileep Row Has Revealed The Patriarchal Mindset Of Malayalees
- IWB Post
- July 10, 2018
While the current unrest in the Kerala film industry has brought out its misogyny, it has also established its women’s strengths.
AMMA’s decision of taking back Dileep despite him being accused of sexually assaulting a colleague sparked huge outrage, so much so that many of the women quit AMMA. The WCC also came up with a list of objectives that needed immediate attention.
In a recent interaction with Scroll, Malayalam novelist KR Meera talked about the entire issue and how it has brought to light the misogyny of the Malayalam film industry.
Commenting on the recently formed WCC and its stated objectives in the light of the Dileep row, Meera said, “It was an extremely brilliant and powerful move, without which the issue would have missed the kind of attention it has captured presently. It was the first of its kind in the history of Malayalam cinema.”
She added, “I consider the formation of WCC as the revolution of the millennium towards an egalitarian society in Kerala. The stated objectives of WCC are, in fact, really the objectives of women working around the world. The emotional quotient these women demonstrate in dealing with the egoistic and insensitive group of men is astonishing.”
Meera also expressed that the decision to reinstate Dileep has revealed a lot about the Malayalam film industry and patriarchy in Kerala. She said, “The middle-class men of Kerala are against any kind of rebellion from women. By nature, Kerala men do not and cannot approve of survivors. They accept victims, provided they cover themselves in a white or black sari and sit in a dark corner weeping 24×7. It is unacceptable for a survivor to appear in public and be cheerful.”
She further said, “It is very difficult for them to comprehend the idea of rape too. For the majority, there can be two kinds of sex – one with complaint and one without complaint. Rape for them is just sex with complaint. And they do not accept it as a violation of rights, for they believe that women have no rights over their bodies.”
“Just look at the way the members of AMMA reacted to the incident of abduction and assault ever since the name of Dileep surfaced. They went on defending Dileep to even to the extent of doubting that the incident had taken place. More than the male members, it was the female members who came forward to argue for Dileep. All these are truthful reflections of the patriarchal mindset that Malayalees are proud to possess,” Meera added.
Complimenting WCC and other women from the industry who have united for the issue, she said, “The political and social wisdom the few women of WCC have demonstrated thus becomes all the more important. They are standing up for the weak and the helpless. They do it not for [only] themselves. They risk everything for the future generations. I consider the actress who displayed the strength to complain and fight for justice, throwing to the wind the false honour the Kerala society is obsessed about, as the real hero of our times.”