December 13, 2017
Neha Dhupia feels '#MeToo' -- the campaign to raise awareness
about sexual harassment -- is not only valid for people associated with the
entertainment industry, but for everyone. The actress says a victim should not
hesitate to share one's ordeal, and instead save innocents from facing same fate
by talking about it.
Life is getting more and more gender neutral, Neha said, adding that there are still miles to go.
"Things are changing for women. They are getting a position of power, and professionally they are doing exceptionally well. They are getting roles with projects like 'Secret Superstar', 'Tumhari Sulu' or 'Padmavati' that are made around women. There are many films which I can name. Life is getting more and more gender neutral," Neha told IANS over phone from Mumbai.
"It is getting better, but unfortunately there is always that question of #MeToo and there is a Harvey Weinstein that comes across."
Neha was referring to the slew of sexual misconduct allegations levied against the Hollywood mogul. Numerous leading men from Hollywood like Ben Affleck, Brett Ratner, Charlie Sheen, Dustin Hoffman, James Toback and Kevin Spacey, have been accused for sexually harassing people associated with showbiz.
The controversy has rocked the entertainment industry the world over.
Like many other actors, Neha too asserted that harassment is not restricted to showbiz.
"I promise you that is not just in this business. But it is about women across whatever profession they are in. This is happening to them at their home. Anybody could be a victim. My plea is that if you are a victim come out and talk about it because you are not only just protecting yourself but you are also putting a lot of other innocent women in danger.
"Talking about it doesn't make you weak. It makes you brave, so be the braver one in this situation," said the actress, who has never shied away from calling a spade a spade.
Neha, a former Miss India who eventually turned to Bollywood, said: "Life is getting better, but there are things that are being questioned and it is a good thing that people are talking about it."
The actress pointed out how people accused the "House of Cards" star Spacey of sexual misconduct after 31 years of the incident.
"The fact is why stay quiet for that long. You need to speak up sooner."
Neha started her Bollywood innings with "Qayamat: City Under Threat" in 2003. Since then, she has featured in "Julie", "Kyaa Kool Hai Hum", "Chup Chup Ke", "Singh Is Kinng", "Ungli", "Qarib Qarib Singlle" and "Tumhari Sulu".
Talking about her aspiration, Neha said: "My biggest aspiration is to get up and go to work everyday. The larger aspiration in my life is being very content and happy in the job that I am in.
"Go to bed happy and sleep well. I shouldn't lose my sleep over small things. There is always a level of dissatisfaction that 'I wish I had done this, I wish I had done that', but nothing about going to work makes me unhappy."
The actress, who hosts TV shows and a radio show, said she has immense gratitude for where she comes from and what she has achieved.
"I am working on all mediums. I am happy in the position I am in, but yes, there is greed to do more."