#MeToo brought a wave of controversy to an industry that is often glamorised and rose-tinted; the entertainment business. As victims gained the courage to accuse their perpetrators, common people were left shocked by how common harassment is. One such accused celebrity was Anu Malik, long-time judge of the popular reality tv singing-competition, Indian Idol.
After Malik was temporarily suspended from the role during the #MeToo controversy, he was eventually brought back by the Sony network, to the dismay of everyone the slightest bit progressive. However, further surfacing allegations against the TV personality ended up getting him to step down from the role "until his name is cleared."
One Small Step For A Man, One Giant Leap For #MeToo
Judging by the history of sexual assault charges and criminal charges against celebrities in general, it is unlikely Malik will serve a legal sentence. However, his stepping down from the show is still extremely symbolic as it shows victims that opening up about their suffering does not have to be in vain, even against a huge celebrity.
This could very well show a gradual shift in societal perception from mocking and putting down victims to supporting them. Realising that celebrities do not exist on pedestals and deserve to be punished for crimes they commit is especially important in Indian culture, where human idolisation (no pun intended) remains a huge problem.
Hopefully, the legal system too shall eventually see the social significance of the movement and understand the plight of sexual harassment victims. Due to the exhausting and complicated nature of reporting harassment, several victims don't even try. The legal authorities and enforcement should be made much more approachable in order for justice to prevail.