On Wednesday, the Women in Cinema Collective (WCC) put out a statement in support of the nuns who have been protesting against the Jalandhar-based bishop Fr Franco Mulakkal, who has been accused of raping a nun 13 times. The delay in the arrest of the bishop has been questioned. Shocking allegations of the church trying to buy the victim's silence have also emerged.
In their statement, the WCC has slammed Poonjar MLA PC George for slandering the survivor. Noting that he has done so time and again, the WCC has called for swift action against him. Urging the government and the Women's Commission to extend their support to those who have spoken up against the exploitation, the WCC has posted the statement with the hashtag #Avalkoppam. They originally used the hashtag to support their colleague, a prominent woman actor who was abducted and sexually assaulted in February last year. MLA PC George had also made insensitive and crass remarks about the actor in question.
Reminding the state of its indomitable spirit shown during the recent Kerala floods and the recent Supreme Court judgement which read down Section 377, the WCC has said that patriarchal structures and notions should be demolished.
The concluding lines read: "WCC joins the historical protest by the nuns against injustice and misogyny. This is a time when we are witnessing more women who are fearless, invincible and are determined to rise. The time of silence is over!"
The statement is accompanied with a photograph that shows WCC member and actor Rima Kallingal along with the protesting nuns and activists.
Read the full statement here:
WCC stands with every woman who is raising their voice and fighting a lone battle against powerful patriarchal structures in society.
We strongly urge the government and the women’s commission to immediately support the women who have shown courage to speak up and fight against those who have misused their power and position to a level of exploitation and abuse.
We strongly condemn P.C.George who has slandered victims time and again and demand swift action against him.
At a time when Kerala has shown indomitable spirit during the devastating floods, and at a time when we have seen our nation take extremely progressive steps towards equality by striking off #377, giving our dear brothers and sisters from the LGBTQ community the freedom to be, we firmly believe that the true rebuilding of the state should also be the demolition of patriarchal structures & notions that hold us back from being a truly progressive and evolving state.
WCC joins the historical protest by the nuns against injustice and misogyny. This is a time when we are witnessing more women who are fearless , invincible and are determined to rise. The time of silence is over !