Most widely covered by media, the episode of Shilpa Shetty and Richard Gere indulging into a robust romantic posture on stage publicly has been a matter of talks everywhere all these days. Now that they have been summoned by the Court to explain their conduct, the incident acquires graver proportions and is no more just a routine gossip. The explaination addressed to “My Dear Indian friend” by Hollywood star Richard Gere while apologizing for the incident is more irritating than convincing. His emphasis on his “…intentions as an HIV/ Aids advocate” sound to be only ridiculous in the sense that what he demonstrated in an open public show had hardly any thing to do with HIV or Aids unless ofcourse he meant to indicate that the way he and Shilpa behaved at the stage was an education on safeguards against HIV/Aids as they did everything openly except sex. The photograph inserted with this post is the one shown on TV dozens of time and published by several newspapers and magazines sumptuously. Any one can read easily the amount of provocation it carries.
Once in Mumbai I saw a police man at Marine Drive taking a couple into custody for the reason that they were found indulging in ‘obscene postures’ –the obscene posture being that the man was trying to take the woman into a waist to waist tight embrace down below the stone blocks. Certain passersby intervening with the request to spare them had no impact on the police man who was dead bent upon to take them to police station repeating his remarks that it was a serious offence in Law. True, this couple might have been of a trivial status and for him there was no escape against Law but the same act perpetrated in much higher a magnitude is capable of being ignored if the partners involved are celebrities. Shilpa Shetty became much more famous after her ‘Big Brother’ incident abroad and Richard Gere is an outstanding personality from Hollywood. No dearth of explanations and excused for them. They are quite capable of giving good names to the scandal –it could be an awareness programme on HIV/Aids or just a measure of behaving against dogmatism as ‘modern’ or say ‘ultra modern’. Shilpa justifies the act with the remarks that it was all in public interest and for their welfare. Fact as it manifests on the surface is after all that it was hardly any thing more than an irresponsible behaviour or a crude sort of lust for publicity.