Tuesday, November 24, 2009

About the Film "The Holy Wives"


The Holy Wives” is a journey through the life and struggle of Devadasis in Karnataka, Mathammas in Andhra Pradesh and Bedinies in Madhya Pradesh.

A few decades ago, women from certain castes were made wives of god in some parts of India. They were called by the names Devadasis, Jogins, Basavis, Kalawants, Paravatis or Mathammas. These wives of God lived in or around the temples.They had to perform duties at the temples and participate in the religious functions. Even after the system was banned in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, life remains the same for them. The children from these communities are still being trafficked to the flesh market.

Besides, prostitution was turned into a traditional trade in the case of Bedini system in Madhya Pradesh, a nomadic de-notified community. A majority of women in this community remain unmarried and engage in prostitution for to eke out a living.Absence of an alternative means of income and the acceptance of the practice within the community has made it inevitable for the young Bedia girls into this trade.The girls between the age group of 13 or 14 get in to prostitution through an open auction in the village which is called Nathutharai and Siridakai.

Girls are forced to have sex with an upper caste man when they are made jogamma,mathamma or bedini. What follows is a life of sexual slavery, they become sanctified prostitutes.

The film ‘The holy wives’ documents the life of a woman, who is raped in the name of tradition even before she could understand the meaning of sex and the impoverished life that she leads till death. It also goes deep into the struggle a woman from this community forges to maintain her dignity and self-respect.

This film brings out the lives of three different communities who have been victimized in the name of caste based sexual exploitation in this country through the stories of their life, struggle and their dreams of a dignified life for their children.

32 comments:

  1. This is an important social problem and its great the you have taken a step to do something for these women. It is so sad to see and hear these stories...
    Good Luck to all those involved in the research and making of this project. All possible help and support from my side!!

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  2. great effort done by the ahwaan team. m sure the hardwork would pay off. its a very sensitive issue and it has been very commendably brought out of the closet. we must know that these things do exist at this day and age and there is a world like this,that exists parellel to ours.

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  3. Only after I read about the biograhy of Amy Carmichael did I know about this despicable practise. And I also came to know that Rajaji who was supposed to be a statesman supported this practise, and he is supposed to be called a statesman. What audacity?

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  4. I appreciate your courage and efforts of your team to bring into light the desperate emotions and for creating a platform to express the hidden voice of the 'holy wives'. Hats off Rithesh... u all should continue the same spirit!.you had put in lot of efforts to catch the sensitive issue and to show the grass root realitie, I am sure this passionate work of yours should bring changes in the lives of these distressed
    women and their future generation.

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  5. i saw d movie wen it was screened at du few days back n i must say dat i was througly shaken aftter watchg it. its not dat i didnt know dat but i realised d sensitivity n severity of d condition of such ladies n their families. thnx fr makng us even more aware. hope i will be able 2 carry forward d same spirit. keep up d good work..

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  6. Close to the bone??????(((The Holy Wives))) This's not a only story,This movie is a true Life story!!!....Ghire hain sawaalo se javaab chahiye, Javaab dar sawal hain ki "Insaaf" chahiye????

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  7. I haven't watched the movie yet and I hoping to do it soon

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  8. How do I get to watch the movie?

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  9. i read about the holy wives documentary in the hindu newspaper dated 10/01/2010. its really brave of you to bring out the atrocities. all i can say is good work. please dont stop.continue. many more will be benefited
    .

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  10. sum1 plz tell how can we get the movie?????

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  11. To get this movie please contact:

    Ritesh Sharma(Delhi)-09811381695

    Uvaraj(Bangalore)-09448371389

    or email us
    ritesh_films@ymail.com or pedepics@gmail.com

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  12. Dear friends,

    Uploading of the film shall take some time right now, so we are distributing DVDs of the film. We here are not making business but it is also a fact that DVDs and theirs posting will cost some money. So it is up to you how much you pay, we do not have any fixed price
    Uploading of the film shall take some time right now, so we are distributing DVDs of the film. We here are not making business but it is also a fact that DVDs and theirs posting will cost some money. So it is up to you how much you pay, we do not have any fixed price

    ReplyDelete
  13. This is a huge problem, and it needs to be talked about. This is very sad that a lot of people do not even know about the issue dealt in the movie. Ritesh has done a great job by making this movie, atleast now we have a documented proof that this problem exists, and it would be a great help in letting the common people know about it, because, when you know about it, only then you can talk about it, and when you talk about it, the humaneness in you will make you do something for the cause!!!! so guys an gals, lets join hands and stand together to fight this evil!!!!

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  14. Absolutely SPEECHLESS....after watching the documentary,for half an hour I was thinking what comments to give...Should I praise the Director(Ritesh)for the documentary or should I cry/criticize this brutal tradition going on in India....I really appreciate the courage, the effort put in by the team to bring into the emotions, feelings of 'The Holy Wives'. Very well done, 'The Holy Wives' team and wish you guys All the luck for this documentary. I really wish all your efforts pays off and government and other social activists takes some concrete action to abolish this Brutal tradition. Wish you all the luck guys and really happy to be associated with this documentary in some way.

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  15. Ritesh, hats off to you and your team, which is bringing up the voice of the sufferers of the evil social practices and the victims of the biggest crime i.e. human trafficking....carry on your work with high spirits....pls. let me know how can i help you guys in your works..would be happy to support you guys..BEST OF LUCK..you great human beings...

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  16. Hey, this is really commendable job. I wish you all the best and keep going.

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  17. Thank you for your appreciation...

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  18. I really don't find words to describe my feelings throught what I saw in the documentary.
    When I was in India, I discussed with Ritesh about the situation, and I never tought it was spreaded and common as It was in the video. I really love india and I don't want to see more sarrows their. As the chinese proverb says: "the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step". Now the documentary is the first step to a big struggle for the right and freedom of those poor women that we must lead. So we have to speak loudly and make our voice heared to support our suffering sisters.

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  19. Thanks for your comment Salma..We will definitely work together to eradicate these systems from all over the world.

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  20. loved d movie.... vry awakening,,,, i really feel dat d govt. shud take serious steps against prostitution....... d work done by ritesh was really good.....vry beautifully directed,,,,,, vry nice music...... wish u loadz of sucess.....

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  21. Very heart touching movie i think we should wake up not only govt

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  22. Ritesh, I feel you have made a very successful and thought provoking documentary on one of the oldest social evil which is also the most deplorable exploitation of the fairer sex in a male dominated society like India.
    However, few suggestions:
    1) Your film is more like a compilation of interviews, where most of the persons are narrating a similar state of experiences.Yes, they are horrible and also it is very important to show them so that we as audience are able to fully appreciate the situation. However, I am sure your research in this field must have also thrown up few individuals who were able to break out of this system successfully and are today living a respectful life. Why not show them?Tell their success stories..because your film is just highlighting the horror but not the solution.
    2)You can divide your audience in two segments - one who are the sufferers and will see this film, two, people like us who are watching this film for first time, and also understanding the magnitude of problem.For both types - what is the solution??
    I hope you will take this as a constructive criticism. I know you are very capable and we will be seeing a lot of your more innovative and path breaking work in times to com. Best of Luck!!!

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  23. hello ,
    Thanks for the comment, i'd surely try to implement the same
    see, first of all, my main motive was to highlight the plight of those people who have been a victim of the unrelenting attitude of the higher society..
    To highlight about their success stories, there should be some, and for it, the society has to give them some space, respect and the reverence too. Their success stories can be bought up, when they get an opportunity to live.
    My film is highlighting their plight, so that, audience, as you said, the ones who have the ability and the position, can stand up to vociferate the stigma, 'cause it's us, who can change the mindset.
    yeah, we can't scurry for the changes to happen, but i believe, that showing the reality to the people, and igniting the feeling for them in their hearts, can surely bring out success stories ...

    thanks!

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  24. okayy...firstly i am SHOCKED,STUNNED and SPEECHLESS....i dunno what to say,but amazing workkk...i mean the effort put in by ritesh and team is tremendous...fab!!!while watching the whole movie there was only 1 question in mind "will anything actually change after this"!!i just hope this movie becomrs the eye opner for gov n brings abt a major change....

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  25. it is really an act of valor to make this kind of movie without much support hats off to u

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