Ever since the start of the #MeToo movement, Singer Chinmayi Sripaada has been a vital force who stood up for herself and stood up for other women as well.
Speaking at #FoundMyVoice recently, on the occasion of the International Women’s Day event organised by Change.org India and Christ (Deemed to be University), Chinmayi said: “There is a concerted attempt to silence survivors of sexual assault. My career is almost over. Only because I dared to speak up and found the courage to stick to my stand. I am the target of vicious social media abuse for exposing my perpetrator. They ask why it took me so long to complain. These are all attempts to silence survivors and to ensure the #MeToo movement dies down.”
She added: “While the #MeToo movement has given much-needed momentum to the issue of sexual harassment faced by women, the pressure being put on the survivors to prove charges against their perpetrators is breaking them.”
On the latest #MeToo developments in the Tamil Industry and her career, Chimayi said that in the past few months she has been banned from the South Indian cine, television artistes and Dubbing Artistes Union for speaking up. “But men who shame women, encourage men to rape, make rape jokes at audio launch events; ask for virginity tests for heroines continue to lead the union. How come no one questions that venom? I am speaking up so that we arrive at solutions and engaged conversations and not unilateral monologues.”
Durga Nandini, senior director, Change.org India said, “Like Chinmayi, tens of thousands of women are isolated for speaking out. They are punished for having an opinion. We believe that women should never feel alone. Through our programme called She Creates Change, we are building a community of women changemakers who can draw support from each other and join hands to create change.”