Gulzar: Chhapaak is not just a film, but a movement

Komal RJ Panchal
Gulzar song launch

Gulzar attended the Chhapaak song launch on Friday.

The makers of Deepika Padukone starrer Chhapaak launched the title song in Mumbai on Friday. The Shankar–Ehsaan–Loy composition is crooned by Arijit Singh and penned by Gulzar.

At the song launch, Gulzar said Chhapaak is not any other film.

"I admire what Meghna, Laxmi and Deepika have achieved. Chhapaak is not just a film, but a movement in society. Their decision to make this film and through it talk about this issue is commendable. This is not just any other film. These women are telling you something through it. They want to start a conversation on the issue and tell society about it. The lighting torch of this movement is Laxmi. This light is born out of her," Gulzar remarked.

Gulzar has made women-centric films like Aandhi and Khushboo. Talking about women's stories on screen, he said, "My films and writing in some way or the other have been for and about women. Women have been central characters in all my films. Sanjeev (Kumar) would complain how even when he was told that he is the lead actor in my film, it would turn out to be the woman's story. It happened in Aandhi, Khushboo, and many other films."

Gulzar also shared his thoughts about the journey of women in the film industry. He said, "I have always been concerned about their safety and well-being. I used to wonder how to keep them safe, but as time passed, I have seen how women are taking care of themselves. They work shoulder to shoulder with men. Now when you see women in this industry, they are everywhere. There used to be a time when we would not find a single woman technician, maybe the hairstylist was a woman. But today we have women everywhere - women technicians, women filmmakers, women performers. Today, women are playing the lead characters. I would call this progress. In our times, we would have heroines as props. They would be taken on outings and were only used in songs, but things have changed today. It has been quite a journey. Women have empowered themselves and come forward in every way possible. They are leading every cause."

Lastly, Gulzar spoke about the need to fight social evils and violence against women. He said, "But we still have social evils and violence against women. These women are trying their best to change the society's mindset and to tell everyone to treat a woman as an equal. As I said earlier, Chhapaak is a movement. Now it not only these three women's movement, but it is ours. We have to make sure that our women are safe and that they are treated well."