Kanika Dhillon: Men and women collectively responsible for ‘rape culture’

Mumbai (IANS)┬áCelebrated scriptwriter and author Kanika Dhillon, who scripted the new Netflix film “Guilty”, feels women are equally responsible for the existing rape culture and patriarchal set-up of our society.

“Women are equally responsible for the existence of misogyny and patriarchy that have continued to exist for ages. I believe that the real change begins when every mother and sister of the rape-accused takes a stand, and asks for punishment instead of protecting the victim. It really takes a village to protect a rape-accused and in our society, we condition our girl child to do so,” Kanika told IANS.

“The rape culture is prevalent in our country because, after committing the heinous crime, the criminal feels protected and women are teach other women to practice the culture of silence. So, men and women are collectively responsible for every rape that happens everywhere — women who protect a man who has committed the crime and shame the victim, and men who think rape is the way to control women who break the norms of patriarchy.”

Kanika, along with Atika Chohan and director Ruchi Narain, wrote the story around the central character Nanki, played by Kiara Advani. In the film, Nanki’s boyfriend is accused of rape.

After writing films like “Manmarziyaan”, “Kedarnath”, and “Judgementall Hai Kya” what made her pen the story of “Guilty”?

Kanika replied: “I felt it was important to tell the story because a significant change has happened after the #MeToo movement worldwide. It is true that there is a certain amount of awareness and collective consciousness among both genders on sexual harassment, behaviours an so on, but at the same time both genders need to be equally responsible on patriarchy. I wanted to tell a story that addressed that factor.”

Emphasising on the need to stop victim-shaming, she mentioned: “The rapist will walk free and the victim will never gather the courage to register a case. There is an army of people who protect an accused by shaming the victim. That is how the criminal, the rapist, gets protection. Then, it is not just the man who raped but also the people around him, including the women in his life, who are equally guilty.”

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