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The Naked Truth

‘Ranveer Singh: The Last Superstar of Bollywood’

Paper magazine recently published an article for which Ranveer Singh posed naked and in his underwear. This became national news in India after an NGO filed a complaint against him stating that he had offended many women of the country. Mumbai police on Tuesday filed and FIR against Bollywood actor Ranveer Singh for posting his nude photographs on social media. The FIR was filed upon a complaint lodged at the Chembur police station by Lalit Tekchandani, under sections 292 (sale of obscene books), 293 (sale of obscene objects to young people), 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) of the Indian Penal Code and provisions of the Information Technology Act.

His pictures divided the internet into two major groups; one supporting him for his boldness while the other laughing it off as humour. He has been the butt of all jokes of the memes numerous times for his quirky style and personality. Indian media once again failed as they ignored the more important news and picked him as the offender of the nation. In the article, Ranveer Singh spoke about body positivity, his hunger for work and how he fights his problems when he goes into different characters for his movies. As an artist, the poses and his nakedness, shows his process and his willingness to push himself to an all extents. Being naked, that is being at one’s rawest and most natural self, in front of the camera was also not such a big deal for him. Instead, he embraced it. In those pictures, we can see the ease and peace on his face. He also talked about the Kalyuga and expressed his feelings about spirituality.

For three days this was treated very normally and was accepted by the majority of people on social media. However, after the third day the FIRs were filed. People were seen making statements against the FIR, in support for Ranveer Singh while a few others made fun of it. The industry saw this as a bold move as earlier no male actor had done it. In my opinion, filing an FIR is a bit absurd. We are in the 21st century where we talk about aesthetics, body positivity, mental health, gender fluidity, feminism and eliminating toxic masculinity as if it’s the most normal thing yet our judgements always take charge in times like these, why?

People may like it or not but at the end of the day it was the actor’s or the photographer’s choice. Filing an FIR is a big move especially when the reason for it was women getting offended. Several magazines have shot naked pictures of women with their consent for things like aesthetics, content and in the name of liberating women but most of it seems like a marketing strategy promoting a male gaze.

How is it that an artist becomes an offender when he shows his art but when someone does it in the name of religion it's completely fine? I think we have witnessed enough crimes coming from semi-naked people, spreading blind faith in society. I do not mean to offend any religion or their beliefs but I do question the middle-aged generation on their treatment of both of these subjects. As a media student and an artist myself, I do not think it was offensive, in fact, I feel it did justice in breaking the taboo and stigma around nudity. I don’t see any young minds bothering about it and it seems like news long gone. The FIR seemed like a deliberate attempt to distract people from the real issues in the country like our GDP and money value going down in the market, religion and caste related violence and instability in the government’s decision-making. In conclusion, I would like to state that people need to stop pushing their orthodoxy towards the newer, open-minded generation making them less accepting, and should eventually learn to start accepting the new normal.


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