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The Big Fight May 19, 2007

Posted by K in contemporary, Gender.

The Big Fight had quite a topic today- Where is The Indian Woman Headed. A handful in the best of times…and with the jury they had…

There was a Shiv Sena representative, the something editor from TOI, the irrepressible Rakhi Sawant, Diya Mirza, a fashion designer…all women. I missed most of it, just caught the closing comments and the audience questions before that.

From what little I saw, it seemed to me that nobody really tackled the issue. Vikram Chandra was rude to Sawant, as were some other panelists. The audience questions weren’t sizzling, but then it’s difficult saying something intelligent when you have but a few seconds.

Did anybody watch it? If so, can they please share their views on it?

Did they tacle the question of the definition of ‘The Indian Woman’, beyond the dividing the poor woman into the ‘Rakhi Sawant type’ and the ‘Smrithi Irani type’?

I remember one inane comment by a panelist who said that the new Indian woman wanted the face of Aishwarya Rai, the brains of Indra Nooyi, and the body of…I forget, but something equally inane.

What did they have to say on the question of the body? Sawant said that Indian men reserve the same gaze for all women, no matter what they wear. I could gather that the others disagreed but I didnt quite get why…Fashion Designer(or was it TOI editor?) said something about body language determining the gaze…urgh! I’m confused! I apologise for this rambling ranty post, but I would really appreciate it if somebody could illuminate me about this particular ‘Big Fight’

Much thanks is given in advance.

All my love,


PS- I must end with my two paisa bit,ofcourse 🙂 I think Rajdeep Sardesai did a better job with the show.



1. pr3rna - May 20, 2007

I agree Rajdeep did a better job than Vikram Chandra. Haven’t seen this particular ‘big Fight’,so can’t comment on it. I will try and watch the rerun and give my views.

2. Aishwarya - May 20, 2007

I adored Rakhi Sawant on this show. She was absolutely right and all the other panelists continued to miss the point, talking about the Indian woman’s “dignity” (I reserve the right to be as undignified as I want) and so on. She kept forcing the issue back to the most basic topic – that women need to be able to choose and define who they want to be.

The panelist you refer to (apparently we want to look like Aishwarya Rai, think like Indira Nooyi and have the heart of Mother Teresa) is the editor for Femina, so might be excused her lack of sanity.

And please tell me I’m not the only person who wanted to throttle Diya Mirza?

3. sporadicblogger - May 20, 2007

Yes, this one instance, I was on Rakhi Sawant’s side. And the others DID talk about ‘dignity’ didnt they? I didnt mention it because I thought I misheard and misremembered. Apparently not.

No, you are most definitely not the only person who wanted to throttle Diya Mirza. That woman is surprisingly…vacant…(There…I’ve done it again…intellectual snobbery. Sob.) She proves this again and again…Salman Khan…the way actresses are viewed(where she put her foot in her mouth)…and yesterday. If only she didn’t act like such an insufferable know it all…

4. anonymouse - May 21, 2007

*disagrees with Aishwarya*. Throttling Diya Mirza won’t help.

I suggest introducing her to Torquemada instead.

5. rhea - May 21, 2007

I didn’t see the show. But I wonder on what basis the panelists were chosen? I mean are they really representatives of the ‘Indian Woman’?

6. sporadicblogger - May 21, 2007

@anonymouse- whats is Torquemada? (I could google…or you could be nice 😀 hehe)

@rhea-Thats what I wonder myself. Infact, can there BE a representative of the ‘Indian Woman’…?

7. Vasudha - May 22, 2007

You’ve been tagged! 😀

8. pr3rna - May 22, 2007

I finally got to watch this particular episode of ‘The big fight’.It is unbelievable, Rakhi Sawant was the sensible one. Other than her Bacchi Kakaria talked sense. Diya Mirza was very very irritating. Ladies from both the political parties were quite predictable. They claim to be the guardians of female dignity but they are the ones who want women to live like they lived in the 18th century; if not the dark ages.The choice of panel was bad and Vikram Chandra disappointed me.

9. sporadicblogger - May 23, 2007

Thank you for getting back aunty 🙂 It seems that nobody particularly liked this episode.

I wonder, I noticed this a few other times, is NDTV struggling to get panelists?

10. anonymouse - May 23, 2007

Sorry about the delay. Repair work at home == no power for the computer.

Torquemada was a who, not a what.


Tomás de Torquemada (1420 – September 16, 1498) was a fifteenth century Spanish Dominican, First Grand Inquisitor of Spain, and confessor to Isabella of Spain. He was famously described by the Spanish chronicler, Sebastián de Olmedo, as “The hammer of heretics, the light of Spain, the saviour of his country, the honour of his order”. He is known for his campaign of persecution against the Jews and Moors of Spain.

11. sporadicblogger - May 24, 2007

Aha, thank you very much:)

12. Harshita - May 26, 2007

Hey. I’m afraid a got a little too carried away while posting about it on my blog – http://tigereyed-hash.livejournal.com/81211.html

Stupid talk shows. And word for Rajdeep Sardesai.

13. sporadicblogger - May 30, 2007

Thanks for the link, harshita. Sorry for the late reply, not been blogging too seriously for some time now. I promise to read and leave a reply soon.

14. Feministe » On Hating Rakhi Sawant - July 5, 2007

[…] she appeared, but I’m told that it started out that way. I did see her on a Serious talk show (NDTV’s The Big Fight), where the topic of discussion was role models for Indian women. It was ugly, the other panelists […]

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