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Semantee Chattopadhyay
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In October 2017, the hashtag “me too” spread wide across the world. The beginning of the movement was a Hollywood sexual assault scandal that sparked a public reckoning around the world. Thousands of women were using the two words, “me too” on social media to identify themselves as survivors of sexual harassment and assault. While in the other part of the world new laws had been passed and powerful men were forced to step down, it didn’t make such a huge impact in India. Me too movement in India started when actress Tanushree Dutta accused actor Nana Patekar of sexual harassment while shooting for a film 10 years ago. Its failure had several reasons. Firstly, the accusations were made on Twitter and were not verified. People questioned why did she accuse him after a decade. There were no witnesses or shreds of evidence to prove the accusations. Everyone just kept talking about the accusations and no step was taken to enforce or strengthen the laws. Tomato movement lat decision-makers. The accused of criticised and scrutinized by the common people and the angle was not properly channelized.
Me too movement did ignite wider debates. It questions the legal systems to deliver justice. It questions the behaviour of men around women and vice versa. Decoration for gender equality also arises. Me too movement in the West had prompted some companies to introduce new measures to deal with sexual harassment. It also provoked a huge backlash. We do not know if all the cases were true and some men due to this faced social media lynching. Some even had their careers finished. Me too movement gave power solely to the women. Me too was a great opportunity to get rid of behaviour that was not required but it also had its negative consequences.