The Leena Yadav-directed Parched has been getting rave reviews and winning awards on the international festival circuit. But on Sunday, the dusty drama revolving around three women in a remote village in Gujarat who break free of century-old traditions which have kept them locked in servitude was making news for a different reason after two lovemaking sequences featuring Radhika Apte emerged online.
One of them showed the expanse of her bare back as she locks lips, while the other featured frontal nudity. The makers had planned to blur out the latter for the film’s theatrical release in India. Them going viral come as a rude shock.
Producer Aseem Bajaj was unaware of the incident and when informed said he may approach the cyber cell of the Mumbai police to have them removed. “I don’t think the leak happened in India.
The film has released in the US and France and its possible someone uploaded them from there. The scenes are not sensational or titillating in any way. But in our country while rape videos are available freely, sex is still considered taboo so we had planned to blur out the breasts.
Radhika plays a woman who has been beaten up all her life and is yearning for a loving touch,” he informs.
The producer goes on to add that there was never any intention to objectify the actress. “She’s like my sister, we did not set out to exploit her in any way. This kind of attitude stems from the way people view such scenes. I didn’t see men in the US and France `getting excited’.
We haven’t sent the film to the Indian censors yet but I am confident the CBFC will understand the thought behind them and agree that they are integral to the narrative. We are not ashamed of these scenes.”