A satirical take on how sexual assault cases are treated in India, which was made by a group of comedians, has shot to more than a million views on YouTube in just a few days.
The video, called ‘It’s Your Fault’, was produced by All India Bakchod (AIB) and stars Bollywood actress Kalki Koechlin and TV presenter Juhi Pandey describing the myriad reasons why women would be blamed for sexual assault – such as dressing provocatively, working late and watching Bollywood movies. It then closes with the statement ‘Stop Blaming The Victim’.
AIB is a comedy collective producing a weekly sketch show, AIB 365 – an unlikely source for such a politically motivated statement.
In a separate video, Gursimran Khamba, a member of AIB, said the purpose of the ‘It’s Your Fault’ video was to attack the patriarchy in India, which comes to a head in the aftermath of cases of sexual assault. “The first thing that happens is, instead of looking at the crime and focusing on the perpetrator, […] the burden is always put on the woman. She’s the one who’s asked weird questions like ‘Who were you out at night with?’ or ‘What kind of relationship did you have?’, ‘Did you drink?’, ‘What’s the kind of clothes that you were wearing?’”
In India in particular, the issue of rape and how it is dealt with in society came to the fore recently following a brutal gang rape that led to the death of a 23-year-old woman in New Delhi last December.
By approaching this issue through satire, Khamba believes the video can spread the message without being preachy. While he admits that parts of the video make for uncomfortable viewing, the response – from both women and men – has been encouraging. There have even been suggestions of recreating the video in more languages to spread its impact to other regions.
Uploaded on 19 September, the video has already clocked up more than 1.5m views at the time of writing.