Eminent Supreme Court Lawyers Renjith Marar and Lakshmi Renjith Marar will be representing Meghna Nair in the case of using a body double of the actor without her permission in the movie, Honey Bee 2, against its Director, Jean Paul Lal @ Lal Jr and production company, Lal Media. The Kochi Post first reported the clarifying statement of Meghna, that the case has been filed for using a body double and not for passing any lewd remarks; contrary to several media reports.
On July 25th, the day the FIR was registered, Actor Lal appeared in several news channels justifying his son’s act. But the justification that looked entirely scripted with varied modulation in voice, dismissing certain incidents, acting ignorance in some other and showing an under current of film feudalism and patriarchy, didn’t go down well with the public. It was understood as an attempt to intimidate the victim.
Advocate Lakshmi strongly felt an injustice has been done to Meghna; and that is one of the primary reason for Renjith Marar’s grandiose entry into this case.
Marar was one among the counsels who appeared before the Supreme Court bench hearing the petitions against the draconian section 66A of Information Technology Act, 2000. Marar, appearing for Anoop M. K., argued that the section 66A was vague. The Supreme Court quashed section 66A in March 2015, terming it unconstitutional. Having always argued against the death sentence Marar has appeared before the Apex Court on behalf of a number of petitioners sentenced for death. Rasheed death sentence reference and Jayanandan death sentence reference are some high profile cases in which Marar appeared for the convicts. Marar was also one among the counsels who were present in the extra ordinary Supreme Court hearing that took place in the midnight of a day before Yakub Memon was executed.
Women in Cinema Collective offers support
Women in Cinema Collective released a strongly worded official statement yesterday on the incident relating to use of body double as well as leakage of another actor’s private photos. It read as follows:
“Several police complaints registered by some women working in the Malayalam cinema signals how the industry views women in general and how deep are the atrocities against them. It is common work ethics that the agreement with an actor should include the details about how the movie uses a dupe of that actor in particular situations in the movie. It has been essential to restructure the agreements which are normally being made in accordance with the producer’s interest to include wage, duty time and the use of dupe, considering from the part of the woman who enact the role. The recent complaint about a movie illegally using body double of a woman actor points to the fact that a majority of people including actors work in the industry without any formal agreement. And it is nothing but a feudal attitude to decide not to give remuneration for the actor who protested against this and to show arrogance to say it in public.
One other complaint filed by another actor against her private photos being shared on social media shows another side of this issue. It is highly ridiculous to body shame one of our colleagues in such a manner.
The above two complaints point to the sheer lack of work ethics and gender equality in this field. Women have started raising voice against those who try to curb these protests through taboos. The above incidents underline the necessity to clearly define the film field as any other work place and to set up sexual harassment complaint cells. We are always with our colleagues who are seeking justice. Women in Cinema Collective members.”
Jean Paul Lal’s and Lal’s image from Jean Paul Lal’s Facebook profile.