India is being plagued by the mushrooming forces that threaten its democracy, and it is definitely a source of solace to know that not everyone will sit back and take the government's brutal methods of punishment. Kalki Koechlin, the Bollywood star that is often a voice of reason and logic in the country, has taken yet another step to call these moral police on their injustice.
In a recent ad she did with IICE Vodka, she is seen being intimate with a girl, as her voice over says, "It burns me that somebody else gets to decide for me." Although the ad itself was made in May 2015, the timing of its release could not have been better, considering the rising unrest in India. It also provides hope for the impending decision on Section 377 that criminalises same sex relationships.
"I just thought it was a great concept that and I jumped at the opportunity to get paid to do that," Kalki told International Business Times India, adding, "It certainly is great timing for the ad to come out. With the SC reconsidering Section 377 and what is happening at JNU."
The video is certainly appreciated by the LGBT (Lesbian Gay Bisexual trans-gender) community, with Nakshatra Bagwe, an LGBT rights activist, saying, "This ad brilliantly touches issues like stereotypes about Indian women, beef ban and of course the homosexuality aspect by condemning section 377. The youth does not want interference and constant watch on them nor do we need self appointed spokesperson for us. The statement, Kalki and Vodka, the combo is hard hitting and can't get any better."
Bagwe also vocalises his happiness over the absence of homophobia or jingoism in the usually ruse comments section. "I am happy to see no one labelled this ad as "anti national," at least till now. Time has come to tell those people who for trying to frame and label the youth of India in two parts to excuse us."
This statement rings true especially against the backdrop of the witch-hunt that a few political parties are conducting to trap certain JNU students that allegedly raised anti-national slogans at a rally. "We are being prohibited from saying what we want to say. Any healthy democracy should encourage dialogues and that is what the ad stands for," the "Margarita, With a Straw" star reminds us.
Here is the ad Kalki did for IICE Vodka's Kinky Chilli: