Bollywood Journalist

The trials of Reshma


You don’t need to look at her picture so closely. Come on, you know her!

She is Reshma, the most popular pornstar India had known before Sunny Leone.

This actress still rules the Indian online porn scene even though she has quit two decades back.

Popularly known as the most beautiful B-grade actress from the south, Reshma’s semi-porn movies were always super duper hits.

Even now, an average Indian man with an internet connection hits her video clips with alarming regularity.

There’s no doubt that she was on top of her game when she was in the business.

Chances are that you have seen ‘her’ numerous times. But we are sure, none of you have tried to find out where and how she is.

Today, we will tell you that story.

We understand that she is a porn star and you don’t prefer to read or talk about her in public.

But still, we thought we should tell you.

The rise of Reshma

Reshma during the early days of her career

The reason why this girl joined the porn industry was pretty simple. She wanted to become an actress, failed and was eventually lured into the business by pimps who promised her good money.

That is pretty much everybody’s story in the business.

But then, there was something about Reshma that most other porn actresses lacked.

Firstly, she was very fair unlike the other girls and secondly, she was exceedingly beautiful given the standards of the girls working in the Malayalam soft-porn industry during the 1990s.

Within a couple of years of her stepping into the industry, the reigning queen Shakeela, saw a sharp decline in her popularity.

Shakeela eventually bowed out from the competition.

Given the fact that Reshma was more daring with her co-stars and more camera friendly, she commanded somewhere around Rs 5 lakhs per film during 1998-99. The remuneration was very high even by today’s standards. But Reshma was riding high on a boom that was propelling the south Indian (specially Malayalam) porn industry at that time.

The supply of Indian porn has always been pitifully short of the demand from the sex-starved Indian male audience and this had made the industry very cash rich during the late nineties.

Reshma was the undisputed queen of the south Indian porn industry till early-2000.

After that, it all went downhill.

The fall of Reshma

Reshma at the fag end of her career

Reshma’s fall was also typical but it had its usual twist.

‘High-speed’ internet (which was good enough speed to play a video) started making a rapid headway into Indian desktops at the turn of the millennium. Most men started preferring to wait for their videos to buffer than buy porn CDs.

This free access to online porn eventually killed the south Indian soft porn industry.

As the industry went bankrupt, Reshma too faced the same fate.

Unlike Silk Smitha or Shakeela, she was never replaced by a younger actress with better assets. Instead, the industry got rid of itself completely.

Reshma — like most of her colleagues— took the next best option to sustain herself. She allegedly became a sex-worker.

A handful of former porn actresses joined Reshma and they operated out of upscale apartments in Bangalore and Cochin.

But one day, she got busted.

Reshma in police custody

On December 14, 2007, the police picked her up from a rented apartment at Kakkanad in Cochin. Two other girls, Ramya and Simran, (both former porn actresses) were arrested along with her. Two alleged pimps or ‘managers’ were arrested too.

Reportedly, the businessmen or the clients who were rounded up in the raid were let off by the police immediately.

What happened next was bizarre.

The police leaked the information of her arrest to the media and hundreds of people gathered at the police station to get a glimpse of her.

As she took refuge inside the police station to save herself from the mob, it was the turn of the cops to take over.

Okay, accepted that police often brag about these ‘catches’ in the media, thump their chests and pat their backs. But then, what the cops did to her, crossed all limits of decency.

An investigating officer took out his phone and started recording the interrogation. He asked her all sorts of nonsensical questions… and then the video was leaked.

We managed to trace the video. Look at how the cops are insulting Reshma and her friends while filming her without her consent.

Here’s that infamous video.

Reshma was charged under various sections of the IPC including ‘soliciting clients for sex’.

She was granted bail and then, a year later, she vanished.

Nobody heard of her after that. Nobody knows where Reshma went.

Sources say that Reshma came back to her hometown Bangalore and wanted to start life afresh. Her family apparently disowned her and she struggled for the next five years to make ends meet.

May be, she has chosen a life of anonymity.

But the incident at the police station surely changed her life forever.

Isn’t video recording a woman while interrogating her at the police station amounts to torture?

Was that the end of it or she was subjected to more torture while in custody?

When you watch her porn videos next, ask yourself these questions at least once.

Sorry for ruining your mood but we felt that the story needed to be told.

If you search the internet there are several such videos where the police have released videos of hapless sex workers just for kicks.

This is a time when we should pause and think whether there should be a stricture given to police personnel in India to treat their ‘catches’ with dignity, irrespective of their gender. 

We guess it is too much to ask for these days.