Posted on March 7, 2016 at 6:04 pm

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#InternationalWomensDay: Pallavi Pradhan – A complete woman, not modern woman!

Mothers know best has never been a truer statement than in the case of Surili Kant (Pallavi Pradhan). The mother with a modern taste is constantly on the look out for her sons, teaching them valuable lessons on mannerisms, respecting women And more. We got in touch with Pallavi Pradhan, who essays the role of Surili to discuss the issues surrounding women’s rights in the 21st century. Here is what she had to say:

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Bahu Hamari Rajni_Kant takes on a rather satirical approach in defining the modern woman. What according to you is the definition of a modern woman?

There is no such thing as a modern day woman. What there should be is a complete woman, a woman who is holding her roots tightly and yet having the ability to adapt and accept the changing world and time.

Your character Surili has redefined a modern mother/mother-in-law in many ways. What is your favorite characteristic of Surili? In what ways are you like or unlike Surili?

Surili is loving yet she is dominating, she does not need words to convey her thoughts. Her expressions speak louder than her words.

Biggest difference between myself and Surili is that I am not a Bengali. As for character traits, yes I am loving yet dominating. For me it’s my or no way. Or at least that’s what my husband says. Jokes apart, people who know me well they love me and people who don’t know me, they love to hate me.

Female feticide and infanticide are on the rise in patriarchal regions such as India and China. Do you believe that the government or the United Nations is doing enough to control the issue?

More than the goverment or the United Nations it’s us as individuals who have to do something about it. It is only us who can change our thinking. In terms of feticide, it is often a person’s individual decision considering the situation that she is in. While I do not support the issue, the negatives and positives are debatable. Infanticide on the other hand is a crime. Killing a live baby is disgraceful and the government and UN needs to step in and stop this.

In a particular scene where Shaan and Surili are discussing the characteristics of a modern bahu Surili makes the statement, “round rotis do not make a person a well rounded and well mannered human being.” How true is this statement to the modern day bride?

Round rotis certainly cannot be the criteria to judge a woman. Women who can make round rotis can be bad human being and women who can’t make a roti at all can be the most kind hearted. I feel that as the in-laws expect certain things from their bahu, a bahu too has the right to expect certain things from her in-laws because she is the one who has left her comfort and came to their house for their son. Rather than make her uncomfortable and pick at her vices, in-laws should make her comfortable, with a mutual understanding of course. so Once she is content and gets her comfort zone in her husbands house she will do just about everything even without being told. The mother in law should understand her bahu more because she herself too has once gone through this phase in life. Honestly I could not make rotis until I got married but today I do just about everything in my house. Manners has nothing to with what you can or what you can’t do, it is only what you see you absorb and what’s your upbringing is what makes you who you are.

In old times women did nothing other than taking care of the house n bearing her man’s children. Today women are as good as men. They work, they are highly educated, they are capable and dependable. Previously parents only taught their daughters to be good home makers, but today they are taught to be outstanding citizens in and out of their homes. Today, rather than spending their time cooking, they are smart enough to earn money and hire a cook to provide for their families.

The feminist movement had a grave impact in liberating women, but today some women use feminism as a vice. Issues ranging from false rape cases, false allegations on in-laws and using womanhood as a reason to get the last seat on the bus have put women in a bad light. What should women in order to fight for their rights and equality but not disrespect the men who respect them in the process?

I think moral education is most important. No text books, no schools , no colleges can teach you your morals. Your morals come from your parents, your surrounding and your life experiences. Women who use feminism as a vice need to be morally educated by friends and family. To add to that, let’s not centralize it but generalize this freedom used as a vice by men, women and people of all ages. Everyone misses their age, their perks and their freedom. Everyone misuses the unsaid respect given to them. Maybe the government and schools should have campaigns on this as a social issue. Like alcohol, drugs and cigarettes there should be a teaching on moral respect, entitlement and freedom as well.