male prostitution COMMENTS
They are unintelligent and risque, crass and dirty. Yet they make anywhere between Rs 5,000 and Rs 20,000 a night. They are the Indian gigolos. Their world is about desire and passion. Of frustrated and loveless women. They are...

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Daily Mail
Oct 10, 2005
Pic-a-Boo Into Our Private Igloo
Old habits die hard, don’t they, Mr Mehta? Hence this take: Women Buy Men for Sex (Sep 26). The Debonair streak sneaks into Outlook. The current issue is so disgusting that leave alone opening it, I don’t even feel like looking at it. I’ve been a diehard Outlook fan for many years now but you have failed me. I’d always ask my 13-year-old son to leaf through your magazine to keep abreast of happenings all around. Now what?
Geeta Rajan, on e-mail

For a change, you gave us an issue that addressed men rather than women. But old habits seldom die young. You still had to resort to nude pictures of girls in a story based on male gigolos. Incredible logic that.
Karma, on e-mail

The latest issue of Outlook is nothing short of pornography. We would like to unsubscribe if this is to go on, since we have children and working staff at home.
Vivek Kariwal, on e-mail

Interesting read. These ‘aunties’ are everywhere, even in a (supposedly) conservative society like Kerala. The breed here is called ‘akkan’, of women in their 40s, husbands (usually) in the Gulf, loaded and bored. In all fairness, we can’t expect them to practise their conjugal rights once a year—that too with someone who, in all probability, would have lost the ‘zing’ with all the Marlboros and the easily available Chinese/Filipino/Russian girls. That said, your story on horny swamis was a poor subplot, it was out of place and did not share the synergy of the cover story.
Thommen Jose, Kerala

Your article was extremely well researched, clearly reflecting the desperation of women to come out of the shackles of mundane relationships and to live life on their own terms...the pervasiveness of gigolos indicates the new alpha woman of our society, and ironically, the increasing tendency of people to stoop to any means to earn money.
Prithwish De, New Delhi

I was shocked to see the explicit photographs published in Outlook. The survey was all right, but why the full-page pictures? Aren’t you a family magazine, and not Debonair resurrected?
Gayatri Rammohan, Pune

Shefalee Vasudev’s story was good research but why did it have to be one-sided? There was nothing on what the ‘aunties’ themselves had to say on the issue? As for the ‘gigolos’, your article maintains they do not do what they do for ‘majboori’ but for ‘bucks’ and ‘fun’. This is certainly not true of all. There is a huge section of male prostitutes in our country who, like their female counterparts, sell themselves for money. What is surprising is that we are so ready to ascribe ‘majboori’ as the reason for female prostitution but the male plight is never given an ear!
Shalini Gupta, Calcutta

Your cover story reveals the moral degradation that has beset present-day society. Sex today is mere animal lust and no longer connotes love and commitment. However, radical changes have taken place more in women than in men. Today, among them, rampant premarital sex, adultery, sex with multiple partners, hiring of gigolos, group sex and prostitution by educated college-going girls has become more common. It’s time we opened our eyes to reality, stopped pretending that all is well and hail feminism, that catch-all licence to cock a snook at ‘morality’. We should be asking ourselves whether what has been promoted as empowerment, independence and creativity has really resulted in a qualitative betterment of women’s lives. Or has it just resulted in confusion and distorted perception?
Sutapa Dutta, Calcutta

Vinod Mehta seems to be having problems understanding the difference between Outlook and Debonair. Your story is more an excuse to print soft porn than a serious attempt at understanding the changing role of sex today. Eight pages of pictures with a small amount of statistics thrown in on the side. Why spend time actually analysing the data and drawing conclusions when you can sell the same number of copies by printing racy pictures? Alfred Kinsey didn’t resort to such cheap tricks. One expects better from Outlook.
Vinoo Vasudevan, Chennai

Outlook should have made it clear what segment of the population it was surveying, whether it was the same people who were shown in the pics? Here’s my two without love is abusing your body and psyche. Sex with love is...divine.
Nitin, Nashville, US

I was a bit taken aback to see Outlook and another leading national magazine centering around the same subject. The photos supporting the articles were artistic enough to appear on the Pirelli Calendar, but in Outlook they looked more like an ad for condoms. Even your story was an exclusive on the urban society. Even today in many parts of India there are women who do not understand even the basics of sex. Yet you can go around spinning a story to suit some pictures and big statistics.
Vidhya Venkat, Chennai

There is nothing wrong in speaking and publishing surveys pertaining to sex, rather such issues should be publicised. But those pictures! My mother had to hide that issue from the children in the house, who can’t read English very well but can see alright.
Jasmine Joseph, on e-mail

You must have a mole on your payrolls, bartering trade secrets with your rival. It seems too much of a coincidence otherwise for both of you to have sex-related stories. Good for you both, I am sure, but both have lost some esteemed readership for turning family magazines into porn shows.
Narayana Joisa, Gonikoppal

Your article on sexuality and male prostitution was informative. It revealed facts only a blind moral policeman or a liar can deny. But I was baffled by your methodology. What was the socio-economic background of your respondents?
Aishwarya Mohan Gahrana, Aligarh

There will no doubt be a mad scramble for your current issue and perhaps you will have done better business this week than at any other time. But, then, is this not a manifestation of the strong malaise that has gripped Indian journalism? Even you cannot resist the temptation of splashing photographs to attract custom! When common militancy, unemployment, a judiciary gone haywire, ineffective legislatures, rampant casteism, rank communalism, avaricious medical services, useless educational structure, corrupt bureaucracy, resurgent conservatism, and countless other social disruptions demand a sharp focus from the media, the minuscule upper-middle-class magazines are busy highlighting things that are merely symptoms of a society progressively going neurotic.
Sharad Rajimwale, Jodhpur

How can a leading magazine be a trend-setter for degeneration and decay? Whom do you fool with your survey, data etc?
M.K. Krishnamoorthy, Mangalore

The misgivings Vinod Mehta expresses in Delhi Diary on completing 10 years are unwarranted. As long as you keep publishing photos of a stud shoving his hands in his undies, your job security is assured!
T.V. Venkatraman, Bangalore

There are certain things in life which sound good only if a quotient of privacy follows them. Sex is one of them. The moment this emotion is divided by a divisor called privacy and the quotient becomes zero, it becomes obscene, intolerable and irritating.
Bhama Purushothaman, Chennai

Mr Mehta clearly misses his Debonair days. How else do you explain the profusion of nudes in the issue? What value did the pictures add to the survey? Or were you test-marketing an idea for yet another magazine? Are Outlook sales flagging?
Rohit Agarwal, New Delhi

So, when temptation knocks at the door, does morality fly out of the window?
S. Chakradhara Raju, Hyderabad

What is the going rate for a man like me (75)? I badly need the money to fight female prostitution.
K. Damodaran, Bangalore
Oct 24, 2005
Sex Offender
Whether by coincidence or not, it certainly appeared as if you were competing with India Today (Women Buy Men For Sex, Sep 26). I am the librarian of Welhams Girls School, and our library is used by students from Classes V to XII. We encourage them to read Outlook to improve their general awareness. I fail to see what purpose is served by this story, beyond arousing people’s prurient interest and improving sales. A family magazine is hardly the forum to discuss these issues.
Paramjeet Kaur, Dehra Dun
Sep 19, 2005
12:01 AM
“These Gigolos are ‘Social Activists’ of their kind who are determined to eradicated ‘Gender Bias’ from our soil by getting 'Women' something which used to be only men’s privilege since ages.”
Rajneesh Batra
New Delhi, India
Sep 21, 2005
12:02 AM

Love is never having to stain your sari.

I can’t take credit for its origin. But one can only squeal with delight at this brilliant play on words. For the dazed and confused Chaddis, it’s a play on words, “love is never having to say you’re sorry.”
Old Mac
???, United States
Sep 23, 2005
12:03 AM
honestly u old mac clown.. where does chaddhi come in picture .. it seems u have nothing else to talkmexcept chaddhi this and chaddhi that.. has some chaddhi boiked ur sister or is some chaddhi still boiking ur sister and she is loving it and u can;t do anything about it....
Delhi, India
Sep 23, 2005
12:04 AM
Another survey and article on sexual habits of the Indian Urbanites in the ‘Outlook.’!!
‘….someone with Mr. ….. ‘s current name and fame is continuously burdened to produce a “big” …… big in size, big in ideas, big in ambition.’-Delhi Diary, Vinod Mehta. I thought Mr. Vinod Mehta was talking about himself and Outlook after his latest dish on gigolo acts and other sexcapades in Indian metropolises.

I had heard about the ‘gigolo-hunting’ of housewives of certain business community at the Bandra Band Stand in Mumbai in the late seventies. Even a owner of -----’s Palace Hotel in Mumbai , since gunned down by the underworld, claimed in an interview in one of the tabloids how some housewives used make quick bucks through one night stands at his hotel to keep up with the Joneses. Years before that the same behaviour was portrayed by a Malayalam playwright N.N.Pillai in his hugely successful play ‘Kapalika.’

They existed even before Vinod Mehta’s reporters went after them. Was it necessary for Outlook to devote 16 pages of text and photographs to the above topic which could have easily been done in just three or four pages? The photographs would have looked great in the pages of your old magazine ‘Debonair’ but not in ‘Outlook.’ These are social aberrations that don’t deserve to be advertised in a national magazine like ‘Outlook’ time after time.

The only article worth reading was the one by Rajesh Parikh. By presenting the article on Godmen ‘God Forbid’ along with the article on gigolos, were you trying to justify their act?
Thomas K. Mathai
Mysore, India
Sep 23, 2005
12:05 AM
I know in metros there is a big competition among dailies but I did not realize Outlook has to put up with one such fight. TOI and others handling this thru soft porn stories. Outlook, Frontline and likes used to come up with strange polls on wicked and perverted themes. These social aberrations may be happening in some remote Metros that does not mean every single women across the country is removing their panties and paying for dick services by young ones. Even extra marital affairs do happen across the world but India has long way behind western and other countries where women pay for dick service. Outlook as always sensationalize remote and isolated cases. This is nothing but cheap and yellow journalism.
Kerela, India
Oct 02, 2005
12:06 AM
Isn't it surprising that two leading English weeklies publish similar surveys. Is there a leak in the editorial staff in either of the 2 magazines - a fallout of cold war for readership.

The photgraphs in the weeklies trying to outdo each other in their explicitness, are a but natural outcome of the "competitiveness" as perceived by you.

Hope you don't fall prey to this "honey trap" to boost your sales and desist from using such cheap photographs on your pages in future lest you may start losing your loyal readership.
sanjay kumar sinha
Haldia, India
Oct 12, 2005
12:07 AM
Hi Shefalee! Your article makes for interesting reading & kinda wowed me!You really wrote it so well.Now any idea of the places these so called Aunties P/Up these Guys? Take care.
New York, United States
Oct 13, 2005
12:08 AM
It was nostalgia revisited for me reading the anniversary issue.More so as it flashed a tapestry of events of the "golden decade"-an expression I can safely assume, holds good for both Outllok and me.

Wish i was not 19 in 1995 and could have been a part of your madhouse.All in all an enjoyable journey with ya folks.....hope it only gets better from here!!!!
Lukcnow, India
May 06, 2013
04:08 PM
Comment removed for violation of Website Policy
mumbai, India
Jan 22, 2015
02:52 PM


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