The Heat: India’s #MeToo movement

The Heat

India's #MeToo Movement

It’s being described as India’s #MeToo movement.

Women have flooded social media with stories of sexual harassment and abuse at the hands of men.  The momentum picked up in September when Bollywood actress Tanushree Dutta spoke out about a 2008 claim that veteran actor Nana Patekar inappropriately touched her on a movie set.

Patekar has denied the allegations. In October, more than a dozen female journalists accused politician M.J. Akbar of sexually harassing them in the workplace when he was their newspaper editor. Akbar denied the allegations but resigned from his post as India’s Junior External Affairs Minister.

Saba Naqvi, a senior political journalist, shared her story on social media. She said she was harassed by Akbar when she was 20.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has not commented publicly about the allegations against Akbar nor recognized the #metoo movement.

To discuss all of this:

  • Rituparna Chatterjee is an independent journalist who writes about gender issues.
  • Sunita Menon is a director at Breakthrough India, a human rights organization.
  • Priyali Sur is an independent documentary filmmaker and women rights activist.
  • Ingrid Therwath is a journalist at the French weekly newspaper, Courrier International.

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