Not just Chalapathi Rao’s distasteful comments, misogyny is endemic in Telugu film industry

Senior actor Chalapathi Rao is the latest to draw the wrath of the public and media for his distasteful comments on women. The film’s tagline reads, Ammayilu manasanthiki hanikaram (Girls are injurious to mental peace). “Ammayilu hanikaram kadu kani pakkaloki panikostaru (girls are not harmful, but they are useful in bed).” And in response to Chalapathi’s comments, the male anchor of function, Ravi, shouted, “Super answer sir,” on his microphone from the main stage. Instead if saying sorry, he tries to justify and explain rationality behind his sexist remarks with a weird analogy. Telugu’s popular comedian Ali had blatantly objectified Anushka Shetty during the audio release of Size Zero. He says after his wife passed away, he didn’t do a second marriage or got involved with “wrong” women. It was visible in his tone and attitude from the video, where he was supposed to regret his regressive remarks. But, surprisingly this time, not just the media or public, but even celebrities have expressed outrage over the controversy. For the uninitiated, Chalapathi has acted in the upcoming film Rarandoi Veduka Chudham and he also attended the film’s pre-release function, which was held on Sunday in Hyderbad. It’s high time that the filmmakers stop using female actors just to titillate audience and start giving them more meaningful roles in the films. He says he still doesn’t understand what’s wrong in his statement. Well, we will discuss the Tollywood’s silent treatment to such controversies in the past in a bit. But, Chalapathi is just another male actor in Telugu film industry, who have objectified women at a public function. He had compared her to “a hot jalebi who everyone likes to eat” and that he became her fan ever since he saw her thighs in Billa. I used the word ‘beautiful’ because it is neat and classy, but everyone here knows how beautiful you are.”
The actors who are condemning the sexist remarks of Chalapathi today unanimously chose not to speak against such controversies in the past. When Chalapathi was asked to share his thought on the quirky tagline, he had this to say. If I simply run behind the actresses, my fans will be disappointed. As a matter of fact, his problem is part of a much bigger problem in our society, where a woman is judged and appreciated only based on her looks? They like it when I either kiss the girl or make her pregnant.” He added that he also “playfully pinches the female actors he works with”. Tollywood mass hero Nandamuri Balakrishna had infamously said at an audio release event last year, “I have always tried to do different roles. Read | We don’t sleep with snakes but we sleep with women because they’re harmless: This is Chalapathi Rao’s apology
He has a serious problem. Despite sparking a public outcry with his comments, Chalapathi remains unaffected and sincerely unapologetic. But first, what’s more distressing about the controversy is Chalapathi’s inability to understand that he made a comment that reeks of misogyny and male chauvinism. Is it hypocrisy or Chalapathi is a very soft target that doesn’t enjoy too much clout like others in the industry? 2017-05-23T20:58:32+00:00″>
Published:May 23, 2017 8:58 pm

Telugu actor Chalapathi Rao/ YouTube screen grab
The music launch and pre-release events held in the Telugu film industry are notoriously known for causing a widespread public outrage usually due to sexist remarks made by the celebrities on such occasions. So men like Chalapathi just might understand women have more meaningful roles to play in the society than just being “useful in bed.”
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© IE Online Media Services Pvt Ltd Or young actor Nani at Hyper music launch said, “Raashi, you look beautiful and I won’t say anything more because it won’t sound good. His opinion reflects the cognitive process of a thriving breed of men, who fail to appreciate a woman’s abilities beyond performing daily chores within the four walls of a house. He is perhaps oblivious to the fact that he is making the situation even worse than it already is.