In Kerala, a newly formed all-women organisation called Women Collective in Cinema put forward some demands to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. These demands take account of the inclusion of the film industry under the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 and calls for a government intervention regarding the pay disparity between men and women. They have asked for insurance to pregnant women, those who have to skip work due to ailments or child care.
Among other things, the Women Collective has urged Kerala CM to set up a sexual harassment redressal cell for every film that’s made and make certain that the film has the above-mentioned cell in place before its registered. In order to promote gender equality, this organisation has also asked the government to award the film which resonates the sentiment.
This feminist organisation also pressed the government to take steps in ensuring sufficient representation of women in the film industry by the means of reservation in government-backed post production facilities and give allowance to those films that include a certain number of women in its team.
Notably, this organisation though not registered in papers, have taken it up upon themselves to ensure the safety of women in the film industry. Interestingly, Vijayan has agreed to form a committee which will address the issues of women in the film industry. And this committee will also ensure that corrective measures are adopted.
Bina Paul, the editor of Women Collective, reportedly said, “The organisation has not yet taken final shape. It will be registered soon. We feel that this government is sensitive to gender issues and will understand our problems. We are planning to bring the attention of the CM to some of the major issues faced by women in the industry.”
“Our organisation will work within the contours of the various film organisations that are in place and in which we are members,” she added.