Lesbianism Never Had It So Good

In February  it is time for the ladies  to come  out of the closet. Two major films and  an engrossing web series , feature lesbian protagonists who are quite unapologetic   about their  sexual preference.

 In  the  revolutionary mainstream Hindi film Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Lagaa SonamKapoor plays  the darling daughter of  a protective father  (Anil Kapoor) who reveals she loves a woman and will not marry  one  of  the many  suitors that her father  brings  for her.

In the Rangita Nandy-produced Netflix  webseries Four More Shots Please ,veejay Bani plays Umang a typical Punjabi  kudi from a conservative family who doesn’t  know how to break her sexual preference  to her parents. To avoid an ugly confrontation she continues  to “see”  the  prospective bridegrooms who are sent to her while secretly  she has the  hots for her childhood best friend now all set to marry Uman’s  macho brother.

Says Rangita Nandy, “This is a great time for women on screen . They can be  who they want without fear  of  log kya kahenge. We wanted  to put across a strong message  in the series that a woman doesn’t have to be what social rules  command her to be. Be yourself. And don’t feel  apologetic about it. I think the web space is very liberating for  the Indian woman.”

The  Oscar-nominated  film The Favourite which also opens in February shows Queen Anne   of England(played brilliantly  by  Olivia Colman)  in  the 17th century  getting veryupclose and  personal with her companion played  by Rachel Weisz.

Apparently  the  Indian censorboard has decided to cut none  of  the  intimate scenes in The Favourite between   Colman and  Weisz.

Shabana Azmi who was shown  sharing a sexual relationship with Nandita Das  in  DeepaMehta’s Fire says  the  censor board’s  liberal attitude should  not surprise anyone. “The conservatism  of the moral  police  is  so loud that we begin to  feel they represent the  opinion  of  the majority. In  truth, this  is  not so. We Indians are very open-minded  about  all kinds  of circumstances. 23  years ago in   Fire Nandita Das and I were  shown making  love  and the Indian  censor board didn’t frown.”

 Now that Article 377 of the  Indian  constitution  which rendered homosexuality  illegal,  is repealed actress Lisa Ray who plays a lesbian in  Four Shots More Please, says , “Times have changed, This  is  new sexually liberated India. This  mood of freedom  is bound to be  reflected  in  films that we make.”

Jai Hind!

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