Koffee with #MeToo: What happens when two thinking men talk about sexual harassment in Bollywood

Poulomi Ghosh
Poulomi GhoshNov 05, 2018 | 17:10

Koffee with #MeToo: What happens when two thinking men talk about sexual harassment in Bollywood

It made sense. To both Aamir Khan and Karan Johar.

On the sets of Koffee with Karan (season 6), Aamir Khan sounded repentant that he was part of a typical Bollywood song Khambe jaisi khadi hai/ladki hai ya chhadi hai (Dil, 1990), which will go down the ages as a fine example of how Bollywood has been objectifying women.

Meanwhile, it was on the same platform that he was promoting his upcoming Diwali release Thugs of Hindostan, which has Katrina Kaif dancing in a song, the lyrics of which go something like this: De chuki hai darshan/ab parshaad degi kya. And then, it’s like Sabka dil behla chuki/thumariya bhi gaa chuki/baandh ke ab saath mein/aulaad degi kya?


So, well, objectification remains — in some form or the other. 

Don't disturb them. They are discussing #MeToo. (Photo: Screenshot)

What is new is the baggage of repentance along with a whole-hearted acceptance that the #MeToo movement in Bollywood was long overdue. The clean up (we don’t know what he was talking about) was required and it was really unfortunate that women had to wait this long to be heard.

This is what Aamir Khan said as Karan Johar lobbed the issue of #MeToo up from nowhere in his chat show, which reads ‘stop making sense’ as the punch line.

But no, it made sense. To both Aamir Khan and Karan Johar.

A thinking man’s actor, ahead of his big-budget release. A brilliant director, at his own chat show.

A topical reference is a must.

After all, what is Aamir Khan without a social message? 

It doesn’t matter that Aamir Khan didn’t want to comment on the issue of Tanushree Dutta’s allegations against Nana Patekar.


What matters is that his production house walked out of a proposed Gulshan Kumar biopic after Subhash Kapoor, who was to be the director, was embroiled in a case of alleged sexual harassment. Later, when the project steered clear of Kapoor, Aamir was back in it, thus setting an unprecedented precedent of taking an exemplary step to spread the message of zero tolerance against sexual misconduct.

It also shouldn't matter that Bhushan Kumar, part of the biopic based on his father, has also been accused of alleged sexual misconduct. 

Both the men, it seemed, are quite perturbed by the Me Too movement.


Both of them also said how painful it was to find out new names, names of people whom they have been working with for years.

Also, what if the accused are not guilty?

Who will take responsibility of the damage done to their careers — if the allegations are ‘false’?

Apparently, Aamir Khan and Karan Johar both think about this too.

Khan actually said that such disturbing thoughts visit him every night, while Karan Johar said that if they don’t think of these issues, who else will?

So, what do you do when two men talk about women's empowerment, the #MeToo movement, and then invite a woman (Malaika Arora) to conduct some funny games between those two thinking men?


You watch. You listen. 

You observe a minute's silence, perhaps.

Last updated: November 05, 2018 | 17:10
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