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Faye D’Souza recalls some memorable stories she’s brought to our screens


The prime 9 o’clock slot has turned into a drama of debates across channels, with opinionated panellists bellowing to be heard over zealous anchors, the screen a teeming maze of tickers and ads, all in a bid to trump TRPs. But in the midst of this madding crowd, one voice is consistently and quietly making sure she’s heard. She wasn’t really a household name until the summer of last year, when a video of the news anchor, calmly but firmly telling off a cleric on air, went viral. And just like that, in a matter of minutes, Faye Elvira D’Souza had arrived.

D’Souza moved to Mumbai in 2004 from Bengaluru, where she studied journalism at Mount Carmel College. As a business journalist with CNBC TV 18, she moved around the country a lot, and learnt her craft from TV veteran Shereen Bhan, who she considers a mentor. She then moved to the Times Group with Economic Times, and then to the fledgling news channel MirrorNow, as a general news anchor. “As business journalists we’re very service-oriented. We pay a price and we expect a service. In a sense, when we pay our taxes we should get good governance. And if we don’t, we deserve some answers,” she adds. It’s this persistence to doggedly ask the right questions that has won her many fans, and these are the stories she’s bringing to the screens and into our homes.

The one that caught everyone’s attention, June 2017

“I fail to understand why everything—be it religion or the law—is about subjugating women. It’s like we carry everybody’s morality in our bodies. If Priyanka Chopra wants to wear a knee-length dress to meet the Prime Minister, so what? We were talking about a woman’s freedom to wear what she wants, when the cleric Maulana Yasoob Abbas said that I should come to work in my underwear if I wanted to be considered equal to men. It triggered years of frustration in me and I just let it rip. I’ve seen several people like him, and I’m not afraid or intimidated by him. And I told him exactly that.”

The one where she stood up to the government, July 2017

“In July, last year, Mumbai-based RJ Malishka made a video #PotHoleRap in a light-hearted attempt to bring attention to Mumbai’s terrible roads. The party in power at the BMC, Shiv Sena’s reaction to this song was to ban it and slap the radio channel and the RJ with a 500-crore defamation suit. We were pretty vocal not only in our support of Malishka and her freedom of artistic expression, but also in our criticism of the BMC failing to do their job. They had our votes, now they had to do their job. The funny thing is, a couple of weeks after this happened, Mumbai flooded. The fact is: either you do your job, or be cool and admit that you’re doing a terrible job!”

The one where she chose the less sensational headline, November 2017

“The controversy around Padmaavat and the Karni Sena was dominating the news. We fully supported the release of the film and the upholding of creative license and the right to livelihood of every person on the film, but 3,00,000 farmers were protesting in the capital that day, asking for remunerative prices for produce and the waiver of loans. Farmers are killing themselves over this. This is not a political statement, it’s an indication that something is seriously wrong in the country. I’m a farmer’s daughter—my father was a coffee planter—so I know about farmers’ challenges, and the Padmaavat controversy wasn’t going to distract us from the real story.”

The one closest to her heart, May 2017 onwards

“Local stories, particularly those that affect the people of Mumbai, are really important to us. In May 2017, about 30,000 people from 1,000 slums were relocated to Mahul, which is near Trombay. The pollution from the refineries that surround the area makes it impossible to live here. People get sick, and 10 people have died. We’ve been covering the story for over a year, and in October this year the Maharashtra state government was to decide whether they can shift the residents. This is more than a story for me, this is personal. We all live in the city, we all deserve better quality of air to breathe.”

The one where she cried on air, July 2018

“A woman in Panchkula was raped by nearly 40 men over three days. The police refused to file an FIR and her husband had sold her into slavery. She was a victim of both rape and trafficking. It was heartbreaking that in this day and age a woman’s consent doesn’t matter.”

Read more in Vogue India’s November 2018 issue that hit stands on November 5, 2018

Photographed by: Bikramjit Bose. Styled by: Anaita Shroff Adajania

On Kareena: Bikini top, Melissa Odabash

Hair: Ajay Kaloya (Ranbir); Priyanka Borkar (Alia); Yianni Tsapatori/ Faze Management (Kareena). Makeup: Mickey Contractor (Kareena); Hemant Naik (Ranbir); Puneet B Saini (Alia). Production: Imran Khatri Productions; Divya Jagwani. Photographer’s assistants: Vikas Gotra (Ranbir). Assistant stylists: Priyanka Kapadia; Fabio Immediato; Aradhana Baruah. Editorial assistant: Janine Dubash

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Image: Bikramjit Bose

Shirt, jacket, trousers; all Verandah. Necklace, Swarovski. Earrings, Valliyan by Nitya Arora

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Image: Bikramjit Bose

Jacket, Massimo Dutti. Vest, jeans; both Marks & Spencer. Shoes, Steve Madden. Silver necklace, Popli Art Gallery. Rings; both Inaayat Jewels

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Image: Bikramjit Bose

Jacket, Ralph Lauren

The post Faye D’Souza recalls some memorable stories she’s brought to our screens appeared first on VOGUE India.



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