Bhumi Pednekar: Women are a far cry from being equal to men
On International Women’s Day (March 8), Bhumi Pednekar stresses upon the fact that “being a woman in today’s world, comes with a lot of responsibility”. While she is all for celebrating women, their achievements and strengths, she adds, “We have come a long way but even now, women have not been able to achieve equality they deserve. Generations have fought for the kind of freedom and independence we have today and we have to do the same for our future generations.”
The actor insists that the measure of a woman’s empowerment is subjective. “If I talk about myself, I feel empowered as I was born in a liberated family. But when I step out into the world, I realise I am very privileged. There are women who even today don’t have any basic needs and rights catered to - from health to sanitisation, education or even basic respect. Overall, we are a far cry from being equal to the opposite sex.”
She adds that while today is a special day, every day is Women’s Day. “There is a major gender disparity. And, so, every day, through our actions and conversations, we should make sure to inch closer to an equal world. Even in your ecosystem or your house, you have to keep hammering the thought of equality and keep putting it out there constantly,” she exclaims.
While there is admiration for the strength of a woman and her multi-tasking abilities but Pednekar also feels that, at times, too much is expected from women. “It’s not that, we can’t live up to it as women are emotionally superior than men and have more tolerance than them. We can give birth and that is a super power but a lot that is expected is also unreal,” says the actor, adding that disparity comes in because of this. She explains, “A working woman is expected to fulfil her domestic duties as well as her professional ones, which isn’t expected from men. The woman is always expected to sacrifice her career or dreams, which is also due to generations of social conditioning, including added pressure of having children. That’s unfair.”
Not just in life but through her performances too, Pednekar admits, she is conscious about her choices. Having given impactful portrayals in her films including Dum Laga Ke Haisha (DLKH; 2015), Toilet: Ek Prem Katha (TEPK; 2017), Sonchiriya (2019), and Saand Ki Aankh (2019), she says, “As a person, most of my communication is about empowering my gender and I am ruthless about it. So, as an actor, when I have the means to reach out to so many people, I will use it. I consciously choose women who are here to prove a point and have an opinion, as sometimes, strong women might not have an opinion.”