Gender equality shouldn’t remain as ‘talk’, says Bidita Bag

Gender equality shouldn’t remain as ‘talk’, says Bidita Bag

Mumbai, March 9 (IANS) Actress Bidita Bag, who played the character of Indian stunt woman Reshma Pathan in the film “The Sholay Girl”, says society’s attitude has changed towards women as the constant talk on gender equality has created awareness, but she wants the conversation to go beyond talks.

The actress had a long interaction with Pathan during the filming of “The Sholay Girl”. Asked about the changes she noticed from the 70s era to present time, Bidita told IANS here: “Undoubtedly, there is an awareness and consciousness in men’s behaviour but that is not enough.”

“While the constant conversation on gender equality has given voice to many women, aspire many to follow their dreams and know their rights, we need to practice it to continue to bring the change, only ‘talk’ and ‘information on our rights’ don’t help. It is just the first step,” she explained.

The film, based on the life of Pathan, released on the OTT platform ZEE5 on Friday.

Bidita said even though earlier there was no #MeToo movement to create collective consciousness in terms of a safer workplace for women, Pathan had to handle propositioning in a much more diplomatic way as compared to the present time.

“Now, we can say things loud and clear when we are harassed and humiliated at our workplace. It is great that the mindset is changing in society and men have changed their approach towards women, but that is only happening in the urban setup,” she said.

Taking the reference of the Oscar-winning India-set film “Period. End of Sentence”, she said: “We are still living in a country where girls are stopped to get access to basic education when they hit their puberty. We have a long way to go to fix these basics.”

Though Bidita had a successful career as a model before entering Bollywood and also acted opposite critically acclaimed actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui in the film “Babumoshai Bandookbaaz”, she said her struggle is no less than any other outsider.

“One of the first reasons of rejection in my many auditions is, ‘Models don’t know how to act’…I mean, how stereotypical is that? Of course, I am a Bengali and many times I get rejected as people assume that my Hindi is not good. There are different types of stereotyping that happen when they cast a new actress,” shared Bidita.

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