Sexuality Studies • Asian Studies • South Asian Studies
Public Health • Anthropology • Psychology
2017. Director & Producer Vaishali Sinha. Producer Mridu Chandra.
59 & 83 Minutes. In English with English Subtitles.
The 93-year-old Dr. Mahinder Watsa rose to fame for his straight talking and humorous advice in a daily sex column for the Mumbai Mirror founded in 2005. But for over several decades, Dr. Mahinder Watsa has promoted the importance of sexual pleasure, consent and information as a route to gender equality and health. A retired obstetrician and gynecologist, he spearheaded the first ever sexuality education program in India in 1976 during his time at the Family Planning Association of India. To date Dr. Watsa estimates he has answered more than 40,000 questions, the vast majority seeking basic information. At once essential and controversial within the Indian context, he has been called a man “on the edge of becoming a national treasure” by Scroll India. The film also follows his critic, a censorship rights activist and a political science professor who files a court case against Dr. Watsa and the newspaper for obscenity. Contextualizing their stories are the readers of Dr. Watsa’s column and also those who frequently appear at his office for counseling. ASK THE SEXPERT provides a first ever look at the man behind the public persona and cult phenomenon of Dr. Mahinder Watsa – a feminist man in a deeply patriarchal society and a modern India that wants to talk about sex. Ultimately ASK THE SEXPERT is a universal story about the need for a safe space to talk about the body and about desire.