It’s not the feminist in me, but the professional who got super offended when I came across a recent video where newlywed Deepika Padukone and her HUSBAND Ranveer Singh were leaving for Bengaluru from Mumbai for their reception last week. The couple looked happy and super excited despite all the travelling and wedding festivities. The very much ‘in-love’ couple patiently posed for the shutterbugs and was all smiles. While I loved looking at their happy faces and was going ‘awww’ watching Ranveer and Deepika walking hand-in-hand, I was super angered by what I heard in these clips. I ignored it as one-off incident, however, last night Deepika and Ranveer hosted a reception in Mumbai and the paparazzi were at it again and this time I could no longer oversee.
Deepika Padukone has created a niche for herself in Bollywood. The actress is not just celebrated public figure in India, but is also well known for her contribution in the world of cinema and her philanthropic work across the globe. Deepika is also considered as one of the most influential celebrities on social media. She has been the poster girl of films that have had budgets as high as Rs 100 crore! The actress owns a record in Bollywood that no other heroine or hero has, not even Salman Khan, Aamir Khan, Shah Rukh Khan or the Akshay Kumar. In the year 2013, Deepika hit hattrick with three of her movies – Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, Chennai Express and Goliyon Ki Rasleela Ram Leela – minting Rs 100 crore at the box office. And yet, when Deepika ties the knot like many other women in India and may be elsewhere, her identity gets reduced to that of her relationship with the man she married.
It was shocking to see the paparazzi that once referred to Deepika by her name or then Madam, now decided to call the actress “Bhabhi”. It’s especially upsetting when the actress has proved to be equally if not more successful than her husband in the movies. Why doesn’t Ranveer become ‘Jiju’ (brother-in-law)? Blame it on patriarchy or then pure ignorance. How can one not acknowledge the fact that there’s more to any woman than her relationship status? Guess even Deepika has had enough of this new title, because last night the actress for a moment reminded the paps that she’s not their Bhabhi and actually questioned them for calling her Bhabhi.
Here are videos that will explain a lot more than words…
Ranveer continues to remain Baba, but the photogs decide to address Deepika as Bhabhi
Bollywood actresses have often come out in the open and addressed how they receive a second-rate treatment when compared to their make counterparts. No wonder many heroines in the past have feared that getting married or having babies would end their career and then make them now so “desirable” anymore. As if age has not been a factor, where actresses have lost work to younger heroines simply because our 40-50 something stars feel younger when the work with women half their age or sometimes even lesser. Stars like Raveena Tandon, Juhi Chawla have often complained about how they fail to find parts in movies of stars who they had once romanced on screen. There has been enough proof of how gender insensitive the industry has been. And it’s even more annoying when the media becomes party to such stereotyping.
It is unfortunate that this is a discussion, especially when we’re talking about one of the top heroines of Bollywood like Deepika Padukone. In a few days when Priyanka Chopra gets hitched to Nick Jonas, we bet Bollywood’s Desi Girl will also be rechristened. Guess I shouldn’t be surprised if I hear someone shout out PC Bhabhi.