It could well be dubbed as the Pink of the rustic landscape – a film that takes on misogyny in a small town. Debutant director Avinash Das’ Anaarkali Of Aarah is yet another bold statement on a woman’s right to say ‘no’. Not only has the small film won big raves for its feminist theme but Swara Bhaskar, as the feisty protagonist, has been hailed for her heart wrenching performance. The story spotlights Anaarkali, a street singer and dancer. who’s sexually assaulted by a politician... and her battle for vindication.
It was a real-life incident that inspired the journalist-turned-director to make Anaarkali... “I happened to see the music video of an erotic song, Hare Hare Nebuaa, sung by the Bhojpuri folk artiste Tarabano Faizabadi. While she was singing expressionlessly, it was juxtaposed with a sequence of a woman trying to seduce a man,” he says adding, “It left me intrigued.”
There was yet another incident that left an impact on Avinash. “Folk singer Devi in Chhapra district (Bihar) is well-known.Once the Vice Chancellor there misbehaved with her, ” he says. Furious and humiliated, she took a stand against him. “The incident took a turn for the worse and he had to finally resign. “Street singers often have to face such insults,” he rues. It was this spirit of self assertion and fighting for one’s dignity that triggered Anaark