Nandita Das’s movement against fairness products has created a furore in the entertainment industry. Actors who have been on the wrong side of the fairness bias are lauding her effort.
TV actor Mitali Nag, who has been typecast in dark-skinned roles ever since her debut in the TV soap Afsar Bitiya (AB) and later Khubsoorat, says, “I am excited about Nandita’s campaign and wish I could be part of it."
Adman Prahlad Kakkar says, “This was long overdue and I am glad Nandita has spearheaded this movement. One should discuss a woman’s achievements, not her skin tone. Beauty is about the construction (of a body) and not skin tone. Even undue fairness makes people look ugly.”
Rajshri Thakur, who is best remembered for playing the role of Saloni in Saat Phere, and currently plays a dusky queen in the show Maharana Pratap, admits that she has faced rejection due to her complexion. She says, “Dusky women are cast in roles of a poor girl or a village belle. I’m not affected by such biases as we have actors like Smita Patil, Bipasha Basu and other gorgeous women, who’ve made their mark.”
Expressing her grievance against the stereotype, Mitali says, “Before AB, I was selected for two other shows, but I was dropped at the last minute. A creative director even got my face painted two shades lighter.” “In Khubsoorat, I played a dark and ugly girl. There isn’t a dark-skinned girl playing the lead role in any TV show today. Even if film actresses can’t speak proper Hindi, they bag big roles due to their complexion,” she adds.
Talking about the obsession about fairness products, Kakkar says, “There are fairness creams not only for women, but also for men these days." While Mitali feels people use fairness products because stars endorse them, Rajshri laughs off the claim saying, “It’s high time people educate themselves."