Wither #MeToo ??

My mother regularly watches all the music related programs on Tamil channels – like Super Singer, Sun Singer etc. Especially if the participants are little children, she enjoys the program even more. But there is one program on Zee Tamil that she refuses to watch – its the Sa Re Ga Ma Little Champs. Are you wondering why ? Well, this man is one of the judges –

Vairamuthu, picture taken from the internet.

Infact it is difficult for me to write this piece as I see this vile man’s face :(. Many people reading this blog may not recognise him outside TamilNadu and almost everyone in TamilNadu will recognise him – he is the famous lyricist, poet Vairamuthu. The (late) Karunanidhi spoke to this man every single day, the first call would go to him because of his prowess in Tamil.

This man was accused by the well known singer Chinmayi Sripada of harassment when the #MeToo movement broke. Not a single Tamil channel showed the story nor supported Chinmayi. Vairamuthu did not lose any assignment while slowly Chinmayi’s work dwindled. Young kids who participate in this Zee Tamil program fall at this man’s feet to take his blessings ….. if you aren’t cringing, something is wrong.

This is the reality of the #MeToo movement and why I don’t see it going anywhere. The big fish get away. I am very glad that M J Akbar resigned, I am very glad that Alok Nath was booked and is probably hiding somewhere, but who will bell the big cats ? Just two days back, the famous man who was accused of sexual harassment and was investigating his own case with himself on the committee at The Liar, sorry The Wire, was back on Twitter –

I don’t know what happened to the lady who accused this man of harassing her but The Wire goes about its business of spewing venom on the PM and Mr. Dua continues to rake in the moolah as consulting editor and now through a new gig. Sweet. And this trashy e-paper has the gumption to talk about women’s rights.

A few days back at a Lit Fest, Faye D’Souza of the Mirror Now fame moderated a debate with Tavleen Singh and Barkha Dutt about the #MeToo movement. I have only one question for Faye – what happened to the Vatican-relieved-Bishop Mulakkal ? Since Faye is so committed to the cause of women safety and dignity, can she trace this man? Can’t seem to find him anywhere …. and no justice in sight to the nun who accused him of harassment and molestation !

The last tweet from Faye was on Oct 26th –

The #MeToo movement in India seems to have been a convenient temporary diversion to let some powerful people get away and a couple of offenders got caught as collateral benefit. Am happy even if one of the offenders is caught, tried and goes through an agonising punishment but I am disappointed about the powerful getting away every single time. Who will fix a Vairamuthu? A. R. Rehman, the great music composer asks his sister if these rumours are true and the sister says, yes, I have heard these rumours from other performers as well. I saw this interview. But A. R. Rehman continues to work with Vairamuthu … is he not powerful enough to issue a statement that he won’t do any work with this lyricist? What is he afraid of? The maestro Ilayaraja doesn’t work with this vile man … probably because he knows something about him that he doesn’t support.

Why are the allegations against Vinod Dua not investigated ? Where is Vatican-relieved-Bishop Mulakkal ? Whatever happened to Ajit Jogi’s daughter ?… the list is endless and the harassment continues unabated. The #MeToo movement has sputtered to a dead stop and new victims emerge everyday. So much for all the noise on FB and all the outrage on Twitter – two minutes of fame for some forever-struggling-starlets and a nice cocktail discussion for most. Sad, utterly sad.


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