Bollywood celebrities may come out in large numbers in protest against rape cases, but they have never been as forthcoming when it comes to talking about the alleged sexual exploitation that goes on in the industry. In a bizarre statement, well-known choreographer Saroj Khan, in fact, went on to defend Bollywood on the issue of the casting couch.\
At a press conference on Monday, Saroj Khan said casting couch had been there for ages, and that it provided people livelihood in exchange for it. She even said Bollywood doesn’t abandon (girls) after raping them. This is what she said: “Tum film industry ke peeche kyun pade ho? Woh kam se kam roti toh deti hai. Rape karke chhod toh nahi deti. (Why are you targeting the film industry? At least, it gives people livelihood. It doesn’t abandon after rape).”
She went on to say, “Yeh ladki ke upar hai ki tum kya karna chahti ho. Tum uske haath mein nahi aana chahti ho toh nahi aaogi. Tumhare paas art hai toh tum kyun bechoge apne aap ko? Film industry ko kuch mat kehna, woh humaara mai-baap hai. (It depends on the woman what you want to do. Do you want to give in or not. If you have art, why would you sell yourself? Don’t say anything about the film industry, it’s our godparent).”
After facing a backlash for such a bizarre justification, the three-time National award-winning choreographer apologised for defending sexual exploitation.
However, even after apologising for her statement, it seems Twitterati are not willing to forgive her for such inconsiderate statement. Check out their reactions here.
“I won’t give you the role if you don’t sleep with me” looks like valid consent. Other types of valid consent are gun point consent,knife point consent etc.
< sarcasm >
— DrPS (@DrPS51) April 24, 2018
“Done with consent and at least provides livelihood” does she have no shame? Women who face it must be so terribly disturbed, but here she is justifying it.
— gauri 🌻 (@gaurichopra295) April 24, 2018
What the hell! What’s wrong with this Woman, has she lost it completely! How can she defend Casting couch! It’s akin to defending rape!
— Sanjay Bajla (@sanjay_bajla) April 24, 2018
Inka matlab hai ki main jisko kaam du usko pehle do kode maaru aur fir do roti de du to main mahaan hu ? pic.twitter.com/9dbX9Z4f5k
— Anchal Ghai (@ghai_anchal) April 24, 2018
Saroj Khan: If you give roti after rape then it’s not rape.
Bollywood : Roger that… pic.twitter.com/YMdaF3SMBD
— Mr PerFAKEtionist (@parthology) April 24, 2018
I cancelled an Ola today because driver’s name was Saroj Khan. Baaki aap khud samajhdor ho 😹
— Desi Mojito (@desimojito) April 24, 2018
— SubbuS (@SubbuS06) April 24, 2018
Saroj Khan’s bizzare and shameful logic comes at a time when more and more female voices are joining to defeat this venomous practice of using girls in exchange for better role, job or livelihood. Not expected from a three time national award winner!#SarojKhan https://t.co/lFrq1A7AGk
— Geetika Swami (@SwamiGeetika) April 24, 2018
Speaking of the casting couch, Bollywood actress Ileana D’Cruz said, “It might sound cowardly, but I do agree that if you speak out about the casting couch, it will end your career.”