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CARNAL INSTINCTS: Sex on our minds!

A hungry tide swept the nation in 2005. Flashback

india Updated: Jan 09, 2006 12:11 IST
HT City Correspondent
HT City Correspondent

This year a hungry tide swept the nation. Till last December, the land of erotica was brought up on a stale diet of celebrity gossip and titillating scenes on the big screen. That's when the Delhi Public School (DPS) scandal broke new grounds entering the holy precincts of educational institutions.

The halo of glamour in the forbidden territory of sex and voyeurism was an even more resuscitating shot. Hidden cameras and trick photography lived up to the reputation. And, the fruits of such hazardous labour reached almost all, anyone who had access to mobile phones and the Internet (trust friends to share the good things in life). Those that demanded public attention for their serious implications, TV channels came forward for instant dissemination of knowledge. Sex pollinated the air.

The twin crests in the surge of swirling passion were the sizzling Mallika Sherawat (a victim of brilliant computer imagery) and Bollywood bad boy Shakti Kapoor, who lent credence to the casting couch phenomenon in an undercover operation by a TV channel. Shakti's real-life villainy took the flimsy veil off an open secret: In tinsel town, couch precedes talent. Mobile phones and computers became the storehouse of all that could possibly fit into the Biblical 'apple'.

However, such a phenomenon didn't translate into box-office success of the stars caught in the MMS web. Ashmit Patel and Riya Sen did gain notoriety, but it hardly helped Silsilay's (in which the duo played the lead pair) fate. Even those united in their appetite for anything carnal gave a thumbs down to Ek Khiladi Ek Haseena despite warming up to the steamy bathing clip featuring Koena Mitra and Fardeen Khan.

Nonetheless, sex was still a tour-de-force on screen. Vinod Pande, the director of Sins, didn't give a damn about public outrage in his depiction of forbidden love between a Catholic priest and a disciple. In Bengal, 'fragile sensibilities' were shattered with Rituparno Ghosh's bold and sensitive portrayal of the plight of women in Antarmahal.

Far from her hostile India, a blooming Negar Khan refused to be nipped in the bud. A slip on the ramp, followed by a series of topless pictures, ensured her appeal remained undiminished.

An orthodox India, lurking in the wings, chose a perfectly logical message from actor Khushboo (“Pre-marital sex is okay provided safety measures are followed to prevent pregnancy and STDs) to stir up a storm. Sania Mirza's innocuous comment, “all sex should be safe sex,” further stoked the fire. A fatwa clouded the fate of the teenager who was only speaking her mind. Even computer wizards didn't spare her as a video clip with a look-alike is now doing the rounds. Unlike other MMS served gratis, this comes for a price US $20-30 (Rs 950-Rs 1,400).

For the liberal, the pacifist, the radical, the victim, the perpetrator and the junta, sex was the point of convergence, the apple of discord and catalyst for a secret yearning.

First Published: Jan 02, 2006 11:10 IST