Express solidarity with women artistes in the Kerala film industry


On the night of February 17, 2018, a well known actress, who has worked in Malayalam, Tamil and Telugu films, was kidnapped and molested in a moving car while she was on her way from Thrissur to Kochi.

Five months later,  popular Malayalam actor, Dileep, was arrested because of his alleged involvement in the molestation case. He has been accused of hatching a plot with the prime accused, Pulsar Suni and his associates, for abducting and assaulting the actress in a moving car.

A day after his arrest, he was expelled from the primary membership of the Association of Malayalam Movie Artists (AMMA).

However, recently, after actor Mohanlal took over as chairman of AMMA, the accused actor Dileep’s suspension from AMMA was revoked.

This decision has sent shock waves throughout the Malayalam film industry and four leading actresses who are members of the association have resigned from the AMMA. The recently formed Women in Cinema Collective, based out of Kerala, has also come out strongly to protest this decision.

In yet another show of solidarity, 178  women film practitioners from all genres across India have come together to sign a letter of protest. These include Nandita Das, Renuka Shahane, Gitanjali Rao, Namrata Rao, Shweta Venkat, Aruna Raje, Lovleen Mishra, Sheeba Chadha, Aruna Vasudev, Shama Zaidi, Nalini Malini, among several others.

Statement from Women Film Practitioners:

As women working in film across genres and industries in India we received the news of AMMA ( Association of Malayalam Movie Artistes) reinstating actor Dileep, who is an accused in the abduction and molestation of an actor, with shock and deep disappointment.

A body that is meant to represent artistes of the Malayalam movie industry showed complete disregard for its own member who is the victim of this gross crime. Even before the case has reached its conclusion, AMMA has chosen to validate a person accused of a very serious crime against a colleague. We condemn this cavalier attitude by artistes against women artistes who are working alongside them. There is misogyny and gender discrimination embedded in this action.

We admired and supported the Women in Cinema Collective that was formed by women film artistes in Kerala in the aftermath of the abduction and molestation of a colleague, a top star in the industry. We applaud the WCC members who have walked out of AMMA to protest the chairman’s invitation to reinstate the accused.  We pledge our continued support to the Women in Cinema Collective who are blazing a trail to battle sexism in the film industry.

Cinema is an art form that can challenge deeply entrenched violence and discrimination in society. It is distressing to see an industry that stands amongst the best in the country and has even made a mark in world cinema choose to shy away from using their position and their medium responsibly at this important moment. Today women form a significant part of the film and media industries, we reject any attempt at silencing us and making us invisible.

Associations representing film workers have to function through democratic processes and we have to ensure that a few powerful members cannot subvert and marginalise voices of those less powerful than them. As women we are starkly aware of how vulnerable we are in every film industry. This is our attempt to come together and stand in solidarity with the Women in Cinema Collective and urge the chairman and other office bearers of AMMA to function with sensitivity and responsibility, and above all democratically.


  1. Aanchal Kapur, Researcher, Film Curator, New Delhi
  2. Aaradhana Kapur Kohli, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  3. Aditi Pinto, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  4. Akshay Gouri, Film Student, Kolkata
  5. Aliza Noor Khan, Media practitioner, Hyderabad
  6. Ambarien al Qadr, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  7. Amira Sultan Kapur, Media practitioner, Chandigarh
  8. Ananya Chakraborti, Filmmaker, Kolkata
  9. Anjali Monteiro, Filmmaker, Academic, Mumbai
  10. Anjali Punjabi, Producer, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  11. Anubha Yadav, Writer, Academic, New Delhi
  12. Anupama Chandra, Filmmaker, Film Editor, New Delhi
  13. Anupama Srinivasan, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  14. Aparna Sanyal, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  15. Apurwa Yagnik, Film Editor, Filmmaker, Jaipur
  16. Archana Borhade, Cinematographer, Mumbai
  17. Archana Kapoor, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  18. Aradhna Seth, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  19. Aruna Raje, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  20. Aruna Vasudev, Scholar, Author, Film Festival Director, New Delhi
  21. Arunima Shankar, Film Editor, Goa
  22. Ayisha Abraham, Academic, Filmmaker, Bengaluru
  23. Batul Mukhtiar, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  24. Bela Negi, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  25. Bishakha Dutta, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  26. Chandita Mukherjee, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  27. Damini Benny Basu, Actor, Kolkata
  28. Debadrita Bose, Filmmaker, Kolkata
  29. Debalina Majumdar, Filmmaker, Kolkata
  30. Debjani Mukherjee, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  31. Deepa Dhanraj, Filmmaker, Bengaluru
  32. Deepika Sharma, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  33. Deepti Khurana, Academic, Rohtak
  34. Deepti Pant, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  35. Dinaz Stafford, Casting Director, Mumbai
  36. Dipti Bhalla Verma, Film Editor, Filmmaker, Gurgaon
  37. Ekavali Khanna, Film Actor, Kolkata
  38. Fareeda AM, Film Editor
  39. Farha Khatun, Filmmaker, Film Editor, Kolkata
  40. Gargi Sen, Media Practitioner, New Delhi
  41. Gauri D Chakraborty, Academic, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  42. Geeta Sahai, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  43. Gissy Michael, Sound Recordist and Designer, Mumbai
  44. Gita Raju, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  45. Gitanjali Rao, Animation Director, Mumbai
  46. Gouri Patwardhan, Filmmaker, Pune
  47. Gopi Desai, Actor, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  48. Guneet Monga, Film Producer, Mumbai
  49. HansaThapliyal, Filmmaker, Bangeluru
  50. Heer Ganjwala, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  51. Hemanti Sarkar, Film Editor, Mumbai
  52. Iggy Ahluwalia, Art Director, Bombay
  53. Indrani, Student, Writer, Kolkata
  54. Irene Dhar Malik, Film Editor, Mumbai
  55. Ishani Roy, Cinematographer, Mumbai
  56. Jabeen Merchant, Film Editor, Mumbai
  57. Jayoo Patwardhan, Filmmaker, Pune
  58. Jenny Pinto, Filmmaker, Bengaluru
  59. Jeroo Mulla, Academic, Mumbai
  60. Jill Misquitta, Filmmaker, Kodaikanal
  61. Jyoti Kapur Das, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  62. Kasturi, Filmmaker, Film movement worker, Kolkata
  63. Kavita Joshi, Filmmaker, Media Trainer, New Delhi
  64. Kirtana Kumar, Actor/Director, Bangalore
  65. Koel Sen, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  66. Kunjila Mascillamani, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  67. Lalitha Krishna, Filmmaker, Film Editor, Mumbai
  68. Layashree Joshi, Filmmaker, Kolkata
  69. Leena Manimekalai, Filmmaker, Chennai
  70. Leena Yadav, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  71. Lipika Singh Darai, Filmmaker, Film Editor, sound Recordist, Bhubaneshwar, Mumbai
  72. Lovleen Mishra, Film Actor, Mumbai
  73. Madhavi Tangella, Filmmaker, Academic, Kolkata
  74. Madhuja Mukherjee, Academic, Artist, Filmmaker, Kolkata
  75. Madhusree Dutta, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  76. Maheen Mirza, Filmmaker, Cinematographer, Bhopal
  77. Malini Dasari, Cinematographer, Hyderabad
  78. Mansi Pingle, Filmmaker, Bengaluru
  79. Manoshi Nath, Costume Designer, Mumbai
  80. Meenakshi Barooah, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  81. Minnie Vaid, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  82. Miriam Chandy, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  83. Moupia Mukherjee, Writer, Gender Exponent and Film Maker, Kolkata
  84. Nabeela Rizvi, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  85. Nalini Malani, Visual Artist, Mumbai
  86. Namita Nayak Chopra, Sound Recordist and Designer, New Delhi
  87. Namrata Rao, Film Editor, Mumbai
  88. Nandita Das, Actor, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  89. Natasha Badhwar, Cinematographer, Author, New Delhi
  90. Neena Verma, Film Editor, Pune
  91. Neha Parti Matiyani, Cinematographer, Mumbai
  92. Nidhi Sharma, Film Student, Kolkata
  93. Nilita Vachani, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  94. Nina Sabnani, Academic, Animation Filmmaker, Mumbai
  95. Nishtha Jain, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  96. Nupur Basu, Filmmaker, Journalist, Bengaluru
  97. Padmaja Shaw, Academic, Filmmaker, Hyderabad
  98. Paramita Ghosh, Film Editor, Mumbai
  99. Paromita Vohra, Filmmaker, Script Writer, Mumbai
  100. Pinky Brahma Choudhury, Filmmaker, Bagli
  101. Priya Thuvassery, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  102. Priyanka Chhabra, Filmmaker, Film Editor, New Delhi
  103. Priyanka Gaikwad, Sound Recordist
  104. Pooja Gupte, Cinematographer, Mumbai
  105. Pooja Sharma, Cinematographer, Mumbai
  106. Puloma Paul, Film Editor, Mumbai
  107. Putul Mahmood, Filmmaker, Academic, Kolkata
  108. Radha Misra, Academic, Pune
  109. Ranu Ghosh, Cinematographer, Filmmaker, Kolkata
  110. Rajashree , Filmmaker, Novelist, Mumbai
  111. Reema Borah, Filmmaker, Guwahati, Mumbai
  112. Reena Mohan, Filmmaker, Film Editor, New Delhi
  113. Rekha Nigam, Script Writer, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  114. Renuka Shahane, Actor, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  115. Richa Hushing, Filmmaker, Puducherry
  116. Ridhima Mehra, Film Producer, New Delhi
  117. Rinchin, Script Writer, Bhopal
  118. Ruchika Negi, Filmmaker, Academic, New Delhi
  119. Ruchika Oberoi, Filmmaker, Script writer, Mumbai
  120. Rukshana Tabassum, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  121. Saba Dewan, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  122. Sabeena Gadihoke, Academic, Cinematographer, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  123. Sagari Chhabra, Author, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  124. Sakshi Gulati, Filmmaker, Pune
  125. Sanchali Mukhopadhyay, Cinematographer, Kolkata
  126. Sameera Jain, Filmmaker, Academic, New Delhi
  127. Samina Mishra, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  128. Sampritee Ghatak, Actor, Kolkata
  129. Sania Farooqui, TV Anchor, Journalist, New Delhi
  130. Sanghamitra Deb, Actor/Performer, Kolkata
  131. Sayani Gupta, Film Actor, Mumbai
  132. Sehjo Singh, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  133. Shabani Hassanwalia, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  134. Shabnam Sukhdev, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  135. Shanthi Mohan, Cinematographer, Mumbai
  136. Sharmistha Jha, Filmmaker, Kolkata
  137. Shama Zaidi, Script Writer, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  138. Shashwati Talukdar, Filmmaker, Dehradun
  139. Sheeba Chadha, Film Actor, Mumbai
  140. Sherna Dastur, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  141. Shikha Sen, Film Editor, New Delhi
  142. Shilpi Gulati, Filmmaker, Researcher, New Delhi
  143. Shubhangini, Film Student, Kolkata
  144. Shrushti Rao, Film Student, Kolkata
  145. Shweta Ghosh, Filmmaker, Film Scholar, Pune
  146. Shweta Venkat, Film Editor, Mumbai
  147. Simantini Dhuru, Educationist, Filmmaker, Mumai
  148. Smriti Nevatia, Film Curator, Mumbai
  149. Solanki Chakroborty, Cinematographer, Mumbai
  150. Sonali Jha Chatterjee, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  151. Sohini Dasgupta, Filmmaker, Kolkata
  152. Sreecheta Das, Filmmaker, Kolkata
  153. Sreemoyee Bhattacharya, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  154. Sruti Viswesaran, Filmmaker, Film Editor, Mumbai
  155. Subasri Krishnan, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  156. Suchitra Sathe, Film Editor, Pune
  157. Sudarshana Chakroborty, Filmmaker, Journalist, Kolkata
  158. Sujata Kundu, Filmmaker, Editor, Academic, Kolkata
  159. Suhasini Mulay, Actor, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  160. Sunanda Bhat, Filmmaker, Bengaluru
  161. Surabhi Sharma, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  162. Sushma Veerappa, Filmmaker, Bengaluru
  163. Suzanne Caplan Merwanji, Filmmkaer, Mumbai
  164. Swati Dandekar, Filmmaker, Bengaluru
  165. Teena Kaur, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  166. Teena Gill, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  167. Tinni Mitra, Film Editor, Mumbai
  168. T. Jayashree, Filmmaker, Bengaluru
  169. T.N. Uma Devi, Filmmaker, New Delhi
  170. Yasha Ramchandani, Film Editor, Mumbai
  171. Yashodara Udupa, Filmmaker, Bengaluru
  172. Urmi Juvekar, Script writer, Mumbai
  173. Usha Bhasin, TV Producer, New Delhi
  174. Usha Rao, Filmmaker, Bengaluru
  175. Vanaja C, Filmmaker, Hyderabad
  176. Vasundhara Phadke, Film Editor, Mumbai
  177. Veena Bakshi, Filmmaker, Mumbai
  178. Vineeta Negi, Film Editor, Pune