The multi-talented Karan Johar and chief of Dharma Productions, has always been vocal about women empowerment issues. The filmmaker even supported the #MeToo campaign and movement that shook the whole Bollywood industry. Recently in an interview with Anupama Chopra, he also took the pledge to never have any item song in Dharma movies.
According to the director, item songs are meant to just objectify the women and especially when they have no role in story of the film. Karan Johar told, "I have gone on record and apologized that I have had item songs in my feature films and I don't think I would do it again. I have no problem with like a girl dancing, that's not an item number. An item song is when she is objectified and when there are men lusting for her like 'Chikni Chameli'. I don't think I would ever do that again. It's never gonna happen in a Dharma Productions film and I will make sure of it. Like 'Desi Girl' is not an item song but 'Chikni Chameli' is. And, I don't think I would do it. I have grown up singing to 'Khambe Jaisi Khadi Hai, Ladki Hai Ya Chadi Hai' and I didn't even realize what those words are. Then you suddenly sing that song and you are like, 'Oh My God! This is so misogynistic'. And, it's absolutely ridiculous that we have done it and a lead actor like Aamir Khan had danced on that song. He himself, on my show, has actually said that 'I did this and I apologise like I wouldn't do it again',"
We don't even think what these words are. Like I've no problem with brilliantly written and a beautiful song. Just the way how Gulzar saab wrote the songs of 'Omkara'. They are stunning! 'Zabaan Pe Lagaa, Lagaa Re, Namak Ishq Ka' - is beautiful. Even 'Bidi Jalaile'. It's the way you picturize a song like that. You've got to kind of make sure that you don't because eventually we are a very impressionable medium." added Kjo.
Now when the same was asked to Katrina Kaif who did superhit item number Chikni Chameli in Karan Johar's film Agneepath. She said, “Oh, I didn't know that was said, but I feel very differently on the matter. I feel it's all down to the individual who is performing the song. Madonaa, who I'm sure we all know of, I don't think she is feeling objectified. I don't think Beyonce who performs in a swimsuit on stage is feeling objectified. It's all about how you feel while you are performing that song. I can tell you, I never felt objectified in 'Chikni Chameli'.
I enjoyed that song. I enjoyed the dance, I enjoyed what I was doing. I didn't even for a moment felt objectified or brought any kind of wrong eyes on me. Not at all...There are many times when people ask me for songs and there's no context to it. I won't do it, nomatter how much I feel about dance. We don't need to characterize it that every song that a woman is celebrating herself and performing, that's not objectifying women. It all depends on the angle and lens it's being seen.” told Husn Parcham actress.
Significantly, in the recent past, Katrina Kaif has made her space item songs and her recent all songs have turned chartbusters. Now she is going to be seen in Aanand L Rai's film Zero starring alongside Shah Rukh Khan and Anushka Sharma.