Sridevi is not and should not be restricted solely to Hindi cinema. Much before, she forayed into the then Bombay’s filmdom, she has already carved a name for herself as a superstar in Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam films. We know very less about her work as an actor and even lesser about her personal life despite ordinary mortals pretend to be connoisseurs in everything, be it films or morality. Yet, humans claim to be flawless, perfect and an authoritative voice who can stake a claim in making the moral judgment on other people’s lives. Sridevi has contributed immensely to Indian cinema and particularly carving a name for herself in a male bastion and triumphing in a patriarchal world as showcased by the indelible mark she has left in the hearts of her fans and millions of admirers. Yet, we have failed her.
Terming it as appalling, sick, sad and disgusting the venom sprouted on someone who is no longer around to refute the vile criticisms would be an understatement. It was shameful and reflects our upbringing and characters to see the slander immediately after she passed away in Dubai. Whether it’s the WhatsApp messages on the so-called ‘
ketosis diet or hydroxyl drugs’ which circulated but fizzled, media reports and blog posts, it just shows the new lows we sunk into by showing a lack of respect and sensitivity to someone who just lost her life. Not once, we spared a thought about her husband and innocent children having a harrowing time. Yes! People who forwarded those WhatsApp messages should hang their heads in shame for they are as guilty as those wicked people with hidden agenda.
The so-called TV anchors didn’t stop at anything right from Times Now to Republic TV, Aaj Tak and ABP News, barring the exception of NDTV and Mirror Now, who became wine and vodka experts, lying in a bathtub or showing the same by putting the superstar’s poster sprawling in tubs. We were promised that the mystery would be decoded in 15 minutes. No time was lost in showing how misogynistic and sexist we are, as a society. Feeble attempts were made and most blatant lies in casting aspersion on the lady’s character in alluding to the so-called salacious lifestyle. The death of news or
#NewsKiMaut rightly trended on social media. Her death hogged national headlines which is understandable owing to Sridevi’s iconic status as an artist but we have defied the gravity’s law of shame.
The faces of conspiracy theorists were mucked with dirt when the doctors attributed the death to accidental drowning. The theories about steroids, plastic surgeries, taking antidepressants, murder, sharab ke nasha mein, Sridevi ka Aakhri dance was simply apalling. A line was crossed. Death was exploited for TRP. It is not journalism when we see an Arnab Goswami sinking lower in comparing her death to that of Sunanda Pushkar. It was ugly and uncouth.
The shaming of someone passing away and implying that a woman has no right to enjoy a glass of liquor not only makes us misogynistic but shows our lack of sensitivity. What are we inferring to and who gave us the right to label a woman who drinks? The first rule of journalism is fact-checking but those TV journos broke the boundary when they were not even present to see things with their own eyes. It hurts me not just as a Sridevi fan to see such names calling but as a human being. How can we dare to rip someone’s dignity in the most vulgar and crass fashion? I am not showing a lack of respect towards iconic male actors and legends who passed away in the past but nobody ever pointed at philandering men who were having extramarital relationships. Just because she is a woman who has achieved so much solely on her capability as an artist makes her vulnerable even in death. It a real shame where many women themselves sunk into the bathtub of shame and that’s the saddest part.
News just died. No! You cannot throw this voyeurism on a grieving family and show disrespect to her children who just lost their mother, albeit violating the right to privacy. It is heartwarming that many journalists like Barkha Dutt, Rajdeep Sardesai, Faye de Souza and Nidhi Razdan have come in the open to call off this media circus and yellow journalism that shamed the profession. Such journalists and TV channels who indulged in mudslinging have lost their credibility. I mean, how dare you spout venom and lies in the grossest and indecent fashion.
People on social media turned into ghouls and spineless beings who spread those malicious lies and overnight turning into wine, beauty, and medical experts. We witnessed the vile and devilish side of people. The vituperated lies and name calling spearheaded by trolls hiding behind a computer or phone screen in stripping someone’s dignity apart showcased the gutter world we are into. The same people who never let her breath free when she was alive didn’t stop at anything to rip her apart in death.
There is a lady who goes by the name Piyali Ganguly on social media pretending to be a beauty expert and claimed to have met Sridevi in real life shamelessly doled lessons on how the actress never trusted her own beauty and one is intrigued to see the suggestion of a metoo in fashion. Just do a google search on Piyali Ganguly and you will realize that she uses a fake profile. Yet, the person pretends to be a fashion or beauty expert who not only has disdain for someone and she doesn’t stop here but making malicious allegations against Boney Kapoor and his ‘arm candy wife’. I feel like puking. What proof does she holds and the right to throw mud on someone she never met? Has Sridevi ever told Ms. Ganguly anything? Lies. Just the figment of imagination and such people need electric shock treatment in their head and be cured for spreading venom and negativity. It shows how frustrated with their own lives for having failed to achieve anything concrete in their lives. They will not stop at anything to hit at someone who achieved so much in a lifetime. Let’s not forget about Vinita Nagia’s ToI disgusting column on coincidence that cause Sridevi’s death or for that matter taking her away. Yes! Since when Sridevi has suddenly turned into a ‘body’ which showcases insensitivity at its heightened peak.
The blogging world was no less with some drenching knee-deep into the wall of shame to garner hits to their online space. Shameful would be an understatement. One specific blogger and so-called book writer has rediscovered her innate talent as a Karma expert in a badly written article which was done in poor taste, mostly copy and paste rewritten post with the sole aim of garnering hits. It was downright cheap to see this post, right from cosmetic surgery, clandestine relationship and karma pulling all stops. That specific person doesn’t stop here and suddenly becomes a moral authority on the law of fucked up Karma. Well, she must get an award for her Karma crap. How low can people fall!
Who gave her the right to comment on Srideviji’s marriage or relationships? How does she know what happened between Boney Kapoor and his former wife! I have interacted with such vile folks in the past and to be honest, I don’t have any intention to keep in touch with cheap mentalities. The mask has fallen. Yes! I am taking it personally. I have grown up in awe of Srideviji and literally worshipped her right from childhood to stepping into adulthood. I measure my words. How would they feel and the sky forbids if ever a calamity is wrecked on them or their loved ones being snatched away and let them come with a headline about kicking the bucket and Karma playing its role!
Karma has its own way of hitting back on us and certainly, we wouldn’t like to be treated in the same fashion that we have in running down someone, not sparing her even in death. Those bloggers who poured their venom on Srideviji has shocked me and honestly, I feel nauseatic in stumbling on such online space. Today, Srideviji’s innocent children are suffering. There is no doubt that such machievellic allegations linking a death to Karma can badly hurt our loved ones owing to the perverted publicity mongering cowards. I say, have patience and the time when your self-defined Karma will hit you in the same fashion, don’t complain.
Even in death, Srideviji name was shamelessly cashed on and used to garner TRP and blog hits which shows the power that she wielded. Yet! It’s a big slap on the face of haters 2 minutes fame when we saw the outpouring of love on her cremation day. You know why? Because she stays forever and your blog stats or TRP is a blink-and-eye appearance. As a Sridevi fan, I shall never forget this slander and character assassination! Perhaps, people will be deleted from my FB list and blocked on Twitter. It’s not the way we honor a lady who has always led her life with dignity, charm, self-respect and contributed so much to Indian cinema. We don’t deserve Srideviji perhaps.
I rest my case.
Spread love and not hate