Recent Problematic Songs Which Made Us Regret Thinking The Entertainment Industry Is Woke –

There have been so many articles, panel discussions, and interviews with Bollywood celebrities about the problematic lyrics and sexist elements in Indian pop and film songs. So, one would have thought that post these conversations which gained momentum in the late 2010s, we wouldn’t see songs like Fevicol Se or Gandi Baat being made anymore.
But, even in 2019, 2020, 2021, and 2022, there have been loads of cringe-inducing, misogynist, problematic songs full of sexist lyrics. How is it possible to continue enjoying the music of the track if the lyrics don’t stop being disturbing? 
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Video credit: Sony Music India via YouTube
A new song from the soundtrack of Ananya Panday and Vijay Deverakonda’s film Liger, Aafat is under fire for containing a dialogue about sexual assault in the lyrics. Naturally, this has garnered widespread outrage, as the inclusion of Ananya suddenly saying, “Bhagwan ke liye mujhe chhor do,” has nothing to do with the tone of the rest of the song. 
To use this line from a rape scene as a punchline in the middle of a happy dance song is not just unnecessary, but a mockery of what survivors have experienced, too! 

Video credit: T-Series via YouTube
A song from Housefull 4, this entire track is about men chasing women who are running away from them: “O madam goggle waali, Don’t go yun deke gaali.” Not only that, but the lines are about how these men deserve physical rewards for saving the women they are now chasing from men harassing them: “Haan gundon se chhudaya hai, maine tujhe bachaya hai. Ek chumma toh banta hai.”
This is problematic on so many levels that it is hard to pick just one problem with this song. 

Video credit: Desi Music Factory via YouTube
This song is all about the man singing about being teased by the woman’s flying dupatta: “Teri chunari sataye, rani udd-udd ke,” while the woman sings about not wanting him to look at her: “Mud-mud ke na dekh mujhe.” 
Somehow, a woman refusing advances and a man continuously staring at a woman becomes a game in this song, the creepiness of the situation trivialised. 
What’s worse is, the male voice praises the woman for looking like she’s 16: “Teri solah solah solah solah, solah ki jawani hai.
 How is something so creepy even allowed to be in a song?

Video credit: Apni Dhun via YouTube
We all know that Badshah’s lyrics can be explicit, but this time, they were straight up like a threat. 
Ghalat hai sab, par lage hai sahi. Aankhein band kar, daregi tu nahi. Jo bhi main boloonga, karegi tu wahi.” How is it okay to sing about forcing a woman to do things and demand that she not be frightened by his creepiness?

Video credit: T-Series via YouTube
As if the objectification of female bodies and sizeism in the song’s title wasn’t enough, this entire Mouni Roy pop track is about blaming women for men’s bad behaviour. It starts with, “Ladki hai aafat, kehti thi Dadi. In other words, tu hai barbaadi,” but then goes on to victim-blame with “Na aise thumak-thumak kar chal, niyat ban jayegi shaitan.”
But this isn’t the creepiest part. The writers make light of women’s drinks being spiked:
Gora-gora rang hai mera na rang udao ji. Sober sa hai drink mera na bhaang milao ji.
In what world, is it okay to include something so serious in a party song? 
The most unfortunate part is, these are just some of the many sexist songs that have been released recently. A real shocker for those of us who thought society is progressing in the right direction, this proves that Bollywood and the music industry continue to employ problematic tropes without examining what their social consequences will be. 
Lead image credit: WMG, Apni Dhun, Dharma Productions, Puri Connects, AA Films
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