While there is still a raging debate about the screening of the Nirbhaya documentary, the national television channel screened the second part of documentary Purple Skies’s on Saturday afternoon. Directed by Sridhar Rangayan, the documentary is about the exploitation faced by women who are lesbians, bisexuals and transmen.
The stories focus on their subjugation by the law, family and society and also shows women who have bravely managed to come out of it. It’s a major achievement, as post the Supreme Court upholding Section 377, gay sex has once again been criminalised and for many, it’s a taboo even to discuss it.
The film was made with a grant from Public Service Broadcasting Trust (PSBT), which has a tie-up with Doordarshan. “The film was made under a call by PSBT for a series of films addressing Violence Against Women, and I was keen to place the context of violence that lesbians, bisexuals and transmen face by law, society and family,” Rangayan told sunday mid-day.
Rangayan started working on the film in 2008, because he felt that lesbians, bisexuals and transmen faced extreme discrimination. In January 2013, he pitched it to PSBT and the film was selected. It premiered in May 2014, at the 5th Kashish Mumbai International Queer Film Festival.
The documentary has been screened at more than 20 film festivals around the world and has won accolades. The documentary also shows the story of Siddhant, who got a sex change operation last year. This paper had written about him last year. “The film is all the more relevant now with the raging controversy over the Delhi rape case,” said Rangayan.
At the time of going to press, an email to Prasar Bharti’s CEO, Jawhar Sircar, on the selection of the documentary, remained unanswered.