Zeenat Aman opens up on 'gender pay disparity' in Bollywood industry
Zeenat Aman says the gender pay gap hasn't changed in Bollywood
Zeenat Aman has spoken about the 'gender pay gap' in the Bollywood industry that existed in the 70s, and revealed that it has remained the same, Hindustan Times reported.
Taking to her Instagram, the veteran actress shared an old video from the set of her film Qurbani in which she said to a person behind the camera, "90 percent of the time, most of the women here are just playing ornamental roles, purely ornamental. They sing and dance and sort of prance around the leading man. That's about it. What I feel is happening now is there are changes coming about."
Meanwhile, in the caption, she wrote: "In the late 70s, Keith Adam from the Australian Broadcasting Commission popped by the set of Qurbani, where I was rehearsing for ‘Laila o Laila’, and snagged himself an interview."
She further said: "It’s been nearly 50 years since this footage was shot, and the industry has changed immensely since. The roles available to women are clearly not just ornamental anymore. What hasn’t changed though is the gender pay gap. In my time I was lauded as the "highest paid female actor", but the disparity in the pay cheque between my male co-stars and myself was so vast it was laughable."
"The Zeenat you see in this clip was quite certain that half a century would be enough time to even the scales. So it disappoints me that even today women in the film industry don’t have wage parity. Women have consistently put in the work, and I really think that the onus is now on our men - actors, directors, producers - to ensure that their female co-workers (not just stars) are paid fairly. It seems such a simple and obvious thing, and yet it would be revolutionary if any man actually did this," she concluded.
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