Following this remark, the Women’s Collective in Cinema criticised it through their Facebook page.

Casting couch no longer exists but bad women in movies may sleep around Innocent sparks row
Flix Wednesday, July 05, 2017 - 20:04

Does actor, CPI(M) Lok Sabha member and President of AMMA, Innocent, know the reality of the film industry that he is a part of? 

Innocent on Wednesday said the Malayalam film industry is clean of the ‘casting couch’ or in other words sexual harassment. He also added that "bad women" may sleep around, but the industry is free from the vice.

Innocent spoke about it while answering a question at a press conference held in Thrissur on Wednesday to deny media reports that he is quitting as president of the Association of Malayalam Movie Artists (AMMA).

"The Malayalam film industry is clean now and no such thing as casting couch exists in the industry... It is not like the yesteryears. The situation today is such that if there is any bad behaviour towards any women, the media will know immediately," he said, adding: "But if the woman is bad, maybe they will go to bed".

Innocent's women colleagues and members of the Women in Cinema Collective were quick to respond to this whitewashing attempt by the veteran actor.

"Even though we thank Innocent for the nice words he spoke about WCC, we are forced to strongly disagree with his remark that casting couches no longer exist here. The power structures that exist in a society exist here too. Many newcomers coming into the industry are exploited in many ways,” the post said.

In a recent interview, actor Parvathy had openly spoken about the sexual harassment in the industry.

"Very recently only, our own members Parvathy and Lakshmi Rai have all spoken loudly on this topic. We want the newly appointed Justice Hema Commission to study the issues of women in the film industry to look into this aspect also," read the post.

WCC was formed last month by the women working in the various departments of the Malayalam film industry. It is led by actress Manju Warrier.

Bindu Krishna, state president of the Mahila Congress -- the women's wing of the Congress party -- said Innocent's statement is a shame and an insult to Kerala.

"Through this statement, he has proved that he does not have any respect and his position as AMMA president is not tenable. AMMA should be disbanded. For that, all those who have self-respect, should come forward," said Krishna.

Show us some love! Support our journalism by becoming a TNM Member - Click here.