Prime time television on most evenings presents a curious dichotomy.
The news channels offer stories of women surviving and fighting back sexual violence, indeed all forms of violence, through news anchors who come across as strong and independent women.
The general entertainment channels have the usual fare — suffering women, whimpering women, scheming women, and the occasional woman who lusts after a man or his money. “There are all kinds of entertainment programmes.
While some may show women this way, there are others who restore the balance,” argues the programming head of a leading channel. The women from Ekta Kapoor’s Balaji stable, over a decade old now, are still the staple but producers like Deeya Singh seek to cut through the clutter. Kapoor did not comment.
Singh, known for making popular serials with strong and independent women, is making Jee Le Zara based on a women protagonist who manages her farm, is the pillar of her family comprising two grandmothers, sister and brother and is being set up to fall for a man younger than her.
“The portrayal of women is changing. We don’t have to show every woman going to office to prove she’s independent. She can even do things at home with her ideologies and belief,” says Singh.