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‘Women in Indian films need to get past the male gaze,’ says Rahul Mittra at Lit Fest finale

New Delhi, House of Harmony, a literary endeavour by authors Dr. Harshali Singh & Mona Verma wrapped up its 1st edition, Spring Fest 2023 in the capital city on Sunday.
Speaking at the finale of the literary conclave, well-known Filmmaker-actor & branding specialist Rahul Mittra spoke on women in films, citing interesting anecdotes & facts from Indian cinema. Rahul Mittra’s Saheb Biwi aur Gangster triology changed the context of Indian cinema from NRI centric films to Indian heartland, apart from strong portrayal of women characters. His other film Kangana Ranaut starrer Revolver Rani also saw the main female character as just, naughty, unabashedly sexual and complex,
something which was domain of men earlier. Speaking to a full house of enhusiatic and interactive audience, Mittra drew the audiences’ attention to the changing women characters in films from that of a mother, maiden, mistress to strong layered ones currently and stressed on the need to end underrepresentation of women both on & off screen. Due to this disparity, female characters in Indian cinema have been presented through the eyes of a largely male perspective, resulting in stereotypes and gender biases. “Women is cinema have to get past this male gaze,” said Rahul Mittra to a roaring audience. Powered by Kunzum, an emerging bookstore giant in Delhi , the Spring Fest 2023 was attended by eminent writers, poets, social change makers, journalists and filmmakers.

The founders of House of Harmony , Dr. Harshali Singh and Mona Verma lent a platform to many new writers and performers who created a cheery ambience with their performances. The audience were glued to the panel discussions on broad spectrum issues ranging from relevance of AI, impacts of war, writings by medical professionals, various shades of women , sensuality in history and mythology, gender fluidity and role of women in Indian cinema.

The coveted event was attended by filmmaker-actor Rahul Mittra, Major Gen. G.D. Bakshi SM, VSM Retd. , Vinita Nangia-Executive Editor, Columnist-Times Of India, Author, Director-Times Literature Festivals & Write India, Social activists Mahamandaleshwar Lakshmi Narayan Tripathi & Anurag Chauhan founder Humans for Humanity, Eminent lawyer and founder of KLF, Sumant Batra, Shishir Sinha- Associate Editor with the Hindu Business Line, Sandeep Unnithan -editor at News9 plus and Dr. Alka Pande-art curator and historian , Dipankar Mukherjee-founder and publisher at Readomania, Ajay Jain Founder Kunzum and his team led by Subir Dey and Shantanu Roy-editor-in-chief at Om Books, amongst an array of other well known writers and performers.

Mona and Harshali said, “We are overwhelmed by the stupendous response to our maiden edition and now look forward to expanding the portfolio.’

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