Ever since June 14, Bollywood hasn't been the same. First a powerful storm of, 'he said she said' situation engulfed the industry. Followed by an even stronger wave of speculations and allegations. The repercussions were experienced far and wide, with three national agencies at the helm of it NCB, ED, CBI, you name it. And of course the all of media. Just when one thought the dust will settle, maybe the storm is over, it turns out to be a lull before an even stronger one.
Bollywood hits back
Four industry associations and 34 producers, which include Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan, Salman Khan have filed a joint civil suit before Delhi High Court seeking redressal against media trials, specifically against Republic TV, Arnab Goswami, Pradeep Bhandari, Times Now, Rahul Shivshankar and Navika Kumar. The plaintiffs also include production houses of filmmaker Kabir Khan, Farhan Akhtar, Anil Kapoor, Arbaaz Khan, Dharma Movies, Ajay Devgn, among others.
The suit is to refrain them from making irresponsible, derogatory and defamatory remarks against Bollywood as a whole and members of Bollywood. The suit also seeks to restrain them from conducting media trials of Bollywood personalities. There is also an emphasiz on the right to privacy of Bollywood personalities.
It further seeks that the news channels abide by the provisions of the Programme Code and withdraw, recall, and take down all the defamatory content published by them against Bollywood.
When words mean, and hurt a lot
The suit also mentions objections against the derogatory words such as, 'scum', 'druggies,' 'dirt,' 'filth.' The film associations that have joined this petition include, The Film and Television Producers Guild of India (PGI), The Cine & TV Artists' Association (CINTAA), Indian Film and TV Producers Council, and Screenwriters Association.
As always, the reactions were divided, while a certain section of the social media applauded the industry for finally responding and speaking up, there are others who think the industry has been exposed. Meanwhile, the newsroom discussions, media trials and opinion pieces continue, who knows what ensues.
B-town seeks benefit of doubt
The plea, filed through DSK Legal, also includes in its ambit not just the two specified news channels but also several social media platforms. It goes on to cite in its favour, something the industry has always been given credit for. The fact that Bollywood is a huge source of revenue, earns foreign exchange by way of overseas releases, tours, tourism. And also the fact that it provides employment to millions in the country. The matter is likely to come up for hearing this week.
Kangana lashes out
Meanwhile, as expected, the suit ruffled a few feathers, starting with the very vocal Kangana Ranaut. She tweeted to express her displeasure at the suit and also threatened to expose the industry further.
बॉलीवुड के गटर में रेंगने वालों अब पता चला कैसा लगता है जब सारे देश के सामने बेइज़्ज़त किया जाता है, निशाना बनाया जाता है,आइसलेट किया जाता है। क्यूँ कहीं छुप या भाग जाने का मन कर रहा है? तुम इतने सारे भेड़िए हो झुंड में, अकेले का मन तो करेगा की मर जाए,नहीं? #BollywoodStrikesBack pic.twitter.com/r4TjvJe7so— Kangana Ranaut (@KanganaTeam) October 12, 2020