Swara Bhaskar Talks About Her Amazon Prime Show “Rasbhari” Says “Celebrating Sexuality In India Is Gender Based”

Actor Swara Basker says her new web series Rasbhari explores the hypocrisy surrounding female sexuality in a patriarchal society that sets different standards for men and women.

The Amazon Prime Video series is set in Meerut and revolves around a schoolboy Nand (Ayushmaan Saxena) who falls for his teacher (Bhasker). Things become complicated when people find out about the teacher’s supposed sex-obsessed alter-ego, Rasbhari.

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Bhasker said the series, co-created and produced by Applause Entertainment and Tanveer Bookwala, shows how repressed people are when it comes to female sexuality.

It shows you the hypocrisy of this world view. The whole show is a critique of patriarchy and patriarchal thinking where women’s sexuality has to be repressed to the point that it surfaces as an alter ego and of the fact that men are scared of female sexuality and they will vilify women,” Bhasker told PTI in an interview.

The show is about this hypocrisy, our discomfort with sexuality and understanding that we have different standards for men and women,” she said.

Censor board chief Prasoon Joshi had recently tweeted criticizing a scene where a child is dancing in front of a crowd. Swara had defended the scene in question saying that Joshi perhaps misinterpreted the scene.

The actor, who has been at the receiving end of criticism and abusive trolling on social media as well, said she fails to understand the hoopla around it when people don’t have an issue with adult sex comedies starring men.

Nobody bats an eyelid to adult sex comedies (with men) but when you have a show about a woman, who is celebrating her sexuality, then everyone talks about Indian values, culture and the future of children,” Bhasker said.

She believes a lot of people, who are criticising the show haven’t even seen it.

Bhasker, personally, liked the way makers have dealt with various issues in an interesting way.

“I liked the tongue-in-cheek way in which the story was told, the fact that it was dealing with adolescent sexuality in a frank manner. I liked the character. It was a challenge to play this kind of double role, with such two distinctive personalities,” she said about the series, written by Shantanu Shrivastava and directed by Nikhil Nagesh Bhatt.

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