Saturday, January 27, 2007

Of India, Sexual Racism and Shilpa Shetty

Click here for the Richard Gere - Shilpa Shetty kissing controversy

Ok, so this isn't directly linked to Shilpa Shetty on Big Brother but felt I had to share it with you guys. The Times Big Brother blog linked to Vir Sanghvi's column in the Hindustan Times about the Shilpa Shetty racism controversy. And then got a barrage of comments from people complaining about the racist treatment they experienced in India - including in one case a man who masturbated in front of a shocked woman tourist.

Kara: I was subject to REAL racism all the time in India and have been to India several times. But not a single Indian stood up to object. The whole country on the other hand, supports Shilpa over envious girl-squibbles. I was refused train and bus tickets, hotel rooms and called 'white pig', 'dog', 'white whore' and what not. In all of this, I had done nothing to these people but stand there and be western...

Amita: ...Men were intimidating till the point that i went to the police for harassment only to be laughed at and looked at by the police there. On a train journey a man masturbated in front of me to my horror and shock, i tried to take a photo of a temple and was told if i took another one i would be killed... I felt the society is backwards, women live in fear of men and people in general are full of prejudice and racism against other cultures...I thought my country was backwards and narrow-minded...until i visited India.

Leona Ferguson: So Vir Sanghvi is angry at the racism he feels has been perpetuated within the BB house, but has no compunction about using the term 'white trash'? Nor does he look within his own culture...An apparently intelligent man making such facile, narrow-minded and seemingly superior remarks makes me despair far more than a group of nasty bitches on the telly.

Sarah: Did find the country backwards as most people didn't like the fact that I was a woman travelling on my own , and that I was wearing shorts and t-shirts and flip flops.

Kara: ...when I stood at 23:00 in Madurai train station waiting for a ticket and was denied one because "we don't want you peoples here" with the ticket window slammed closed in my face - there was no reason, no comment from my part, or any provocation. I was stunned. And it happened more than once...Indian people are extremely passive aggressive and racist to the max. Indian men will grab privates or breasts when they pass a western woman on the street, or start masturbating right in front of you. No kidding here. This happened not once or twice, but every day, several times a day to me.

Erin_f: Men would masturbate right in front of me and make lewd and offensive comments and gestures and even touch me on buses and trains. In Bombay my flight was cancelled. I was exhausted and tried to find a hotel. Not a single one would take me in because I was a white female and traveled by myself. A front desk clerk in a 4 star hotel even told me that they did not approve of "your kind of activities" in their hotel and that all women in the west were "bad women walking streets". Nothing could convince him of the opposite. Having nowhere to go after trying to get a room in six different hotels, I finally ended up sitting on a bench on Marina Drive tired and sleepy...I found India extremely racist, lawless and truly disgusting.

Hillary: I'm sure upper class Indian do have their manners and try to do good for themselves and their country but India unfortunately is also a very backwards country where women travelling on their own are NOT WELCOMED. They basically think we are sluts which I find so offensive and ignorant....I accept that people in the BB house behaved badly but to all of you who are trying to sell us India as paradise on earth, open your eyes, there is a billion people in there and most of them live in poverty while a few are very, very rich.

Miranda: Indians never gave me a chance, I was a woman, I was alone, I was travelling. In their eyes I'm a disgraceful bitch with no values.

And lastly,

Praveen: the same way people have been saying that Indians should not go by the behaviour of stupid and ignorant people like Ms. Goody as a reflection of British Society; I hope the behaviour of a few uncivilised individuals also does not serve as a yardstick for judging Indian society in general.

You can read all the comments here

Shilpa in a Hugh Grant flick!
UK celebrity lashes out at Shilpa's attitude
Shilpa fever rocks British Parliament
Shilpa's life after Big Brother
SPOOF - Shilpa nominated for Nobel Peace Prize
COMMENT - Of India, Sexual Racism and Shilpa Shetty
ANALYSIS - Racism on Big Brother: Shilpa Shetty to win
FORUM - Racism on Big Brother
Shilpa says Jade's behaviour not racial

DAILY HIGHLIGHTS of Shilpa's stint on Big Brother
Shilpa wins: The final moments
Day 26
Day 25
Day 24
Day 23
Day 22
Day 21
Day 20
Day 19
Day 18
Day 17
Day 16
Day 15
Day 14
Day 13
Day 12
Day 11: Part Two
Day 11
Day 10: Part Two
Day 10
Day 9
Day 8
Day 7
Day 6
Day 5
Day 4
Day 3
Day 2
Day 1

The Best of Shilpa Shetty on Big Brother
And the winner is - Shilpa Shetty
Day 14 - The Jade-Shilpa row
Day 11 - Shilpa in the Jackson Five band
Day 20 - Shilpa's Showgirl routine
Day 19 - Shilpa's Aunt Jameela act

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