“This is the output of millions of years of evolution!? Shame. Shame. When you’re born like a man, try and be one for the rest of your life (sic).”
“Well then in next few years, girls will grow beard and moustache in fashion shows. Creativity has gone so far, that it is becoming senseless (sic).”
The subtext underlying these extreme reactions captures the mindset of the Indian heterosexual male, wincing at the sight of model Saket Sharma wearing blue eyeshadow and blush-pink lipstick with a light stubble.
His photograph was posted on MensXP’s (India’s online magazine for men) Facebook page on February 3. Sharma was in costume for designer Narendra Kumar’s gender-free show at the recently concluded Spring 2017 edition of Lakme Fashion Week, which ran from February 1 through 5 in Mumbai. “The Facebook comments, some vituperative, but mostly mature, echo the divide in society. One section wants us to be evolved, but then a larger group is fixated on patriarchal hierarchy. I’m surprised at the number of men who stood up against close-minded comments, though,” said Kumar about his presentation, titled “Millenials,” which looked at unisex clothes using a coed runway format.