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Writer-Director Manish Gupta’s interview about his movie ‘SECTION 375’

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‘SECTION 375’, the recently released movie penned by writer-director Manish Gupta explores the misuse of rape laws in India.

While the movie ‘SECTION 375’ has garnered acclaim for its story, screenplay & dialogues penned by Manish Gupta, certain feminists have slammed the film for undermining the #MeToo movement.

Excerpts from a chat with Manish Gupta

Writer-Director Manish Gupta
Writer-Director Manish Gupta

Is SECTION 375 a statement against the #MeToo movement?

No. While rape is rampant in our country, and conviction rates are low, fake rape cases are also a disturbing reality. The message of the film is that women are the worst affected by fake rape cases because fake complaints cast a shadow of doubt over the testimony of genuine rape, molestation, harassment survivors.

So, is the film a proponent of the #MenToo movement?

I’d started writing the screenplay and dialogues of SECTION 375 three years ago, much before the #MenToo movement. And I’d written the story in 2009 inspired by Shiney Ahuja’s arrest.

To what extent is SECTION 375 based on hard facts?

Almost 100%. Research always forms the core of all my films, e.g., ‘SARKAR’ that I scripted and ‘RAHASYA’ and ‘THE STONEMAN MURDERS’ that I directed. For ‘SECTION 375’, I carried out three years of research at the sessions court, Kala Ghoda. I attended 160 court hearings. I observed a number of fake rape cases that were diluting the gravitas of genuine cases.

The film’s message to society?

Let us not forget the story of ‘Cry Wolf’ in the modern era.

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