Bhubaneswar: Like other professions, media is also now not untouched by women power. We know women journalists, news anchors and hostesses, but women camerapersons, that too, in Odia media industry is something not easily digestible.
With tripod in one hand and a heavy camera in the other, Alka walks confidently out of her office to finish an assignment given to her. This frail, simple looking lady is proud to be in this profession for the last 8 years and enjoys the limelight showered upon her as she moves with her camera to cover news item for Zee Kalinga, an Odia news channel.
“I travel from Cuttack to Bhubaneswar daily to my office. Though my timings are erratic, I never faced any problem during my journeys. Moreover, as a press person, no one dares to get entangled with me,” chuckled Alka.
A fatherless child, Alka has taken the responsibility of her brother and 3 sisters at home and enjoys doing her work.
“This profession has instilled a sense of pride in me that women can get into any field and excel in it,” revealed the Zee Kalinga cameraperson.
Chubby, ever cheerful Jyotsna has set a landmark by being in this profession for the last 16 years working for OTV, a leading local media group. A mother of a 7-year-old daughter, she juggles her home and work very efficiently. With sheer determination, she has managed to overcome the numerous challenges in her profession.
“When in workplace, I forget that I am a female. All that matters is to capture the right shot. I like doing assignments which are visually appealing. At home, I become a mother trying to spend quality time with my daughter,” informed Jyotsna, living in a joint-family, who returns home many a times at midnight after work.
“My pillar of strength is my husband and my family who support me at all times. Moreover, my colleagues and office authorities have always helped me out like when I was pregnant, they had allotted studio work for me,” said the camera person, who is fondly referred as ‘Apa’ (elder sister) by juniors at her workplace.
The tall and sturdy Itishree, having a keen interest in photography tried her hand in cinema, but things did not work out for her. After a brief period of free-lancing, she joined local Odia channels like ETV and Naxatra News before working for the national channel, Doordarshan.
“I like working amidst male colleagues. I like to see the awe and admiration in the eyes of people when they see a woman handling a camera. There is a sense of self satisfaction when I get appreciation from all quarters,” revealed Itishree,
“Some of my relatives are not able to comprehend my work and are convinced that I click photos,” she chuckled.
“But, all this is possible due to the whole-hearted support of my husband, family and colleagues,” said the mother of a 6-year-old daughter.
Sushree Sulochana Nayak, a camera person at ETV enjoys every bit of her work and has been in this profession for the last four years.
“Though tough at times, I haven’t faced any problems which are not manageable,” revealed the young camera person.
Making a mark in a field which is dominated by males, these women have made their mark by sheer grit and determination. The status of women has been subject to many great changes over the past few millennia, and these women have proved the male fraternity that they are capable of doing their job properly and not the ones to be meddled with..
Be it Alka, Jyotsna, Sushree, Debjani or Itishree, they have made their presence felt in an area not considered fit for women. When camera in hand, there is nothing incongruous in their minds about their work.
These women are shooting to newer heights, establishing woman power and assuring gender equality in the media profession.