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#MeToo: All The People Who Have Been Called Out For Sexual Harassment In India!

#MeToo: All The People Who Have Been Called Out For Sexual Harassment In India!

The #MeToo movement has finally come into its own and a wave of courage has taken over the country as women bravely call out their predators. From Bollywood to the media industry, names seem to be popping up from across the country, prominent or otherwise and social media isn't taking this lying low. Comedians, writers, actors, journalists - every culprit is being named this fire is all set to burn down facade these people have carried out for so long. It began with Tanushree Dutta calling out Nana Patekar for harassing her on the sets of Horn Ok Please and now over 15 people from across fields are being accused of harassment and assault.  


People Accused In Bollywood


1. Nana Patekar


In 2008, actress Tanushree Dutta was shooting for a song alongside the lead actor of the film, Nana Patekar. However, his behavior was inappropriate and made her feel increasingly uncomfortable. In a statement back in 2008, the actress said to a leading newspaper, “A couple of times, I pushed his hands away when he got too close. But it didn’t seem to make a difference. He continued to direct my steps roughly and aggressively. Things got really out of hand when Ganesh incorporated steps where Nana could get physically close to me.” 


And now, in October 2018, she bought the issue to light once again, after no action was taken against the actor in the past 10 years. Instead, Tanushree's car had been attacked and she felt threatened. However, times have changed and her speaking up in 2018 has caused a ripple throughout the industry. "Everyone knows about Nana Patekar that he has always been disrespectful towards women. People in the industry know about his background... that he has beaten actresses, he has molested them, his behavior with women has always been crude but no publication has printed anything about it," the actress said in a recent interview.  


Nana Patekar, on the other hand, has refused to issue a statement, saying that his lawyer has advised him not to talk to the media. However, his lawyer, Rajendra Shirodhkar stated that he has sent a legal notice to Tanushree Dutta demanding an apology for the accusations made by her.


Read more about Tanushree vs Nana Patekar case here.


2. Alok Nath 


The 'sanskari' babuji of the industry has been accused of rape by a director on 9th October, who worked with him in the 90s. She stated that he took advantage of her while she left a party at his place, around 2 am. He offered to drop her home and instead violated. Here is what she described as the 'worst' part of her statement. 


"I started to walk home on the empty streets... Midway I was accosted by this man who was driving his own car and he asked me to sit in it and said he would drop me home. I trusted him and sat in his car.


I have faint memory after that. I can remember more liquor being poured into my mouth and I remember being violated endlessly. When I woke up the next afternoon, I was in pain. I hadn't just been raped, I was taken to my own house and had been brutalised.


I couldn't get up for my bed. I told some of my friends but everybody advised me to forget about it and move on."


Stand-up comedian, Mallika Dua shared the survivor's facebook post on Twitter in a two-part thread, calling the actor out in public eye.




Actress Sandhya Mridul also shared her story in a brave post on Twitter and it looks like Alok Nath's 'Time is Up' indeed. 




In an interview with a leading news channel, Alok Nath said that he was sure the rape happened, but he didn't do it. Sound absurd? We think so too. Here is his statement, "Kuch to log kahenge... Neither I am denying this nor do I would agree with it. It (rape) must have happened, but someone else would have done it. Well, I do not want to talk much about it as for the matter if it has come out, it will be stretched."


Not just that, he even managed to take credit for the survivor's successful career, "At one time she used to be such a good friend... today she said such a big thing. In a way, it was me who made her what she is."


3. Vikas Bahl


The director of Queen and co-founder of Phantom films was accused of sexual assault by a crew member in her article on Huffington Post on 6th October. She said that he offered to drop her home in the early hours on May 5, 2015. He pretended to pass out drunk on the bed, only to wake up soon after and masturbate on her. 


The survivor spoke to the co-director of Bombay Velvet, Anurag Kashyap about the incident and though he offered to help, three years went by and no action was taken. Kangana Ranaut, who worked with the director on the sets of Queen decided to speak up about it. "Totally believe her, even though Vikas was married back in 2014 when we were filming Queen, he bragged about having casual sex with a new partner every other day. I don’t judge people and their marriages but you can tell when addiction becomes a sickness." Kangana also said that he would often hug her too tight and make her uncomfortable by saying things like, "I love how you smell K."


Perhaps the most absurd reaction of them all, Vikas Bahl decided to slap a notice on Anurag Kashyap and Vikramaditya Motwane for defaming him and stating that the dissolution of Phantom Films was because of the sexual harassment case. The notice said, "It is by design that after having remained silent about the alleged incident and alleged victim for three years, you have now come forward and supported the alleged victim. It is imperative to highlight that the alleged victim herself has mentioned that your sudden moral enlightenment is nothing but a hoax and there is a personal agenda behind it."


4. Kailash Kher


The skeletons officially jumped out of the closet when singer Kailash Kher who was known for his poetic and loving image was called out for harassing women while giving interviews. The tweets came flooding in and one by one, women started retelling the incidents that made them increasingly uncomfortable. 





When asked about the allegations by a leading news agency, Kailash Kher said, "I am neither aware of any such act that has been mentioned nor remember it. I am almost all the time in my own simple world, but in case anyone has taken or thought something differently about anything, then it is my sincere apology. For all those who know me and have come across me, will know how much I respect humanity, especially women, even more for the ones who work in media since their work is difficult."


5. Rajat Kapoor


The writer and director behind movies like Kapoor & Sons and Bheja Fry, was accused by two women of sexual misconduct. Sandhya Menon shared an account of a woman who he forcibly tried to kiss, eight times! Another woman spoke up about how he asked her to come over to an 'empty house' for a shoot. 




Post the accusations, Rajat shared an apology on his Twitter account stating that he has always tried his best to be a decent human being. Really, though? 



6. Sajid Khan 


Three women, including an assistant director, actress, and a journalist have accused Sajid Khan, the director behind movies like Housefull of sexual assault and harassment. Saloni Chopra shared her story via an article on her blog, Medium saying, "It took me years to get over the trauma he put me through. I was so scared around the people I worked with. And I’m sure he’s done this to so many other girls, I just want them to know they’re not alone. It’s been 7 years, and it’s about time I said it out loud."


Her article read, "He said he wants me to do everything he tells me to. Stay with him. Maybe he’ll ask me to touch myself in front of him, maybe he’ll want to record it. He’ll do things to me and give me orgasm and teach me the art of sex but maybe he won’t actually put his dick inside me. Maybe he will. But it would be up to him what he wanted and if I thought casting couch was just about a one time sex then I was foolish. No one would cast me unless I was ready to be their ‘keep’." You can read her entire article here


Actress Rachel White responded to Saloni's tweets with her own account of harassment by the hands of Sajid Khan. She recalled how he asked her to strip and made inappropriate comments about her body. 





Journalist Karishma Upadhyay recalled an incident when Sajid Khan showed her his genitals after she interviewed him for work. 



After the accounts of Sajid's behavior started rolling in, actress Bipasha Basu also shared her experience with the director in a series of tweets. 





7. Subhash Ghai 


Filmmaker Subhash Ghai has not just one, but two #MeToo accusations against him. In the first complaint, actor Kate Sharma claimed that Ghai tried to forcibly hug and kiss her. She later went on to narrate a story where he called her to his house on the 6th of August and then molested her. At his house, in front of five or six more guests, he asked her to give him a massage. Out of obligation, and courtesy, she agreed. After a couple of minutes, she went to the washroom and Ghai followed her there. He then invited her to his room to discuss a few things. He tried to kiss and hug her there, and when she retaliated, he threatened her career and refused to launch her unless she spent the night with him. In the case of activist Mahima Kukreja, she shared screenshots of a private conversation where a woman spoke to her about being drugged and raped by director Subhash Ghai. The woman recalled an incident where the director drugged her and took her to a hotel in his car. The survivor's story was shared in a two-part tweet by Mahima.




8. Piyush Mishra


On 11th October, Ketki Joshi shared a Facebook post recalling an incident from a part where the actor tried to harass her. However, at the end of the story, she states that she doesn't wish to talk about it further but hopes other women who have been around Piyush may speak up if he has ever made them uncomfortable. 




9. Luv Ranjan


On 12th October, the director behind films like Pyar Ka Punchnama and Sonu Ki Titu Ki Sweety has been accused of sexual harassment by an anonymous actor. She shared her story in an interview with a leading newspaper. She recalled that during an audition he asked her to stip and the girls who left the audition before her were visibility uncomfortable. 


"Then, Luv Ranjan said there was a kissing scene and a bikini scene in the movie and asked if I was fine with that, to which I said yes. He said he wanted to see what I’d look like in a bikini. Later in life, when I gave another audition for a movie, there was a female stylist who gave me a bikini to do a look test in the presence of lots of people. Luv asked me to strip down to my bra and panties. He said he wanted to see my body so he could check if I needed to lose weight. He said they were not recording anything and the cinematographer would also leave the room, so I needn’t worry. After that, it all gets blurry. My heart was pounding and I rushed out saying I had to leave and wasn’t comfortable with it. I went home and tried to forget about it," she told the newspaper. 


However, the final straw that lead her to leave the audition was, "Then he asked me if I used condoms. The last straw was him asking me if I masturbate. By then, I was scared and asked if I could leave. He said I shouldn’t misunderstand him, and called the three guys into the room and asked them, ‘Do you trust me enough as a director, that if I were to ask you to drop your pants, you would?’"


When asked about these allegations in the same report, the director denied all claims. He responded saying, "It’s absurd. It’s so absurd that I don’t know what to say except that I deny it. I don’t know how to react to an anonymous allegation beyond this and am willing to face any legitimate inquiry."


10. Anu Malik 


On 17th October, Shweta Pandit, a singer, has shared her #MeToo story where she went back 17 years to write about being harassed by Anu Malik at the age of 15. Her tweet read - "he said, “ill give you this song with Sunidhi and Shaan but first give me a kiss now” He then smiled, what id recall the most evil grin I've seen. I went numb and pale in the face. I was only 15 years old then, still in school. Can anyone even imagine what it felt that moment?" Here is her complete story.



People Accused In Media


11. Utsav Chakraborty


On October 4, comedian Utsav Chakraborty, who has closely worked with AIB, was called out on social media for sending pictures of his genitals to girls, some of them minor, and constantly harassing them on Snapchat by asking for 'nudes.'



The co-founder of AIB, Tanmay Bhat was aware of Utsav's behavior but did not take any action. However, when this situation reached social media, AIB was quick to make a statement. 




 

 

 


View this post on Instagram


 

 

Statement


A post shared by All India Bakchod (@allindiabakchod) on




After the scene unfolded, Utsav issued an apology on Twitter and asked what he needed to do to make things right again. 



12. Gursimran Khamba 


On 8th October, Gursimran Khamba, the co-founder of AIB, was accused of assault by a friend. She stated that he refused to sever ties despite her making it clear that she wasn't interested.



After the statement made rounds on social media, AIB shared another post on Instagram stating that Tanmay Bhat has been asked to 'step away' and Gursimran Khamba has been given a leave of absence in regard to the current situation. 




 

 

 


View this post on Instagram


 

 

Statement


A post shared by All India Bakchod (@allindiabakchod) on




Post the statement issued by AIB, once his leave of absence came in light Gursimran Khamba also shared an apology on his Instagram account. 




 

 

 


View this post on Instagram


 

 

My statement on the recent allegations against me


A post shared by Khamba (@gursimrankhamba) on




13. K R Sreenivas


A collective number of tweets called out K R Sreenivas on 8th October, the resident editor of TOI, Hyderabad for misconduct with female colleagues and interns. Six other women joined the petition following Sandhya Menon's claims, he has responded on Twitter saying he will be sitting down for an investigation. 




14. Kiran Nagarkar 


Hotel room assault is a common term used in the media industry, often subjected to by authors or men in powerful positions who would like more 'personal' time with you. Sandhya Menon, after calling out K R Sreenivas on 5th October, received various messages about other author and men in the media industry who were serial predators. This one is about the author Kiran Nagarkar, a 76-year-old Marathi and English author. 



15. Aditi Mittal 


On 10th October, Kaneez Surka, a stand-up comedian, recalled an incident from two years ago when a fellow comedian, Aditi Mittal kissed her on-stage during a show. She shared her story on Twitter, talking about how the kiss wasn't consensual and she felt uncomfortable about the incident. 



In response, Aditi Mittal issued an apology on social media, stating that she had the conversation with Kaneez a while ago and had profusely apologised for making her uncomfortable. 



16. Vinod Dua 


Journalist Vinod Dua and the father of stand-up comedian and champion of the #MeToo movement, Mallika Dua was accused of sexual harassment on 14th October. The woman who was a young graduate at the time recalled an incident from her job interview in a Facebook post. She further went on to say that Vinod showed up at her office and forcefully tried to kiss her. 


“He should stop everything and look into his own shady past. I saw him on a thread which was expressing outrage the false accusations against Varun Grover. I could see what his mind was cooking up when stories against him spill out. I won’t be surprised if he denies. He’s always been an opportunist. Sorry, Mallika Dua, your father is also one who belongs to the hall of shame. #MeToo,” she said in her post. 


MeToo- All the people who have been accused of sexual harassment-vinod-dua


While Vinod Dua hasn't issued a statement yet, his daughter Mallika Dua has shared a statement on Twiter in response to the accusations. 



17. MJ Akbar


Union Minister MJ Akbar was accused by multiple women of sexual harassment in a domino effect of #MeToo stories shared online. Two days after suing one of his 20 accusers for defamation, he resigned from Parliament on 17th October.


Senior journalist Priya Ramani opened up about her #MeToo story and spoke about how Akbar interviewed her in a hotel, offered her a drink, which she refused, asked her to sit with him on the bed and even sang romantic Hindi songs to her. Then UK-based journalist, Ruth David recounted how he called her into his office with a big wooden door so no one could hear or see what transpired inside where he offered to give her a massage and then forcefully tried to kiss her. Another US-based CNN scribe, Majlie de Puy Kamp revealed how he grabbed her and shoved his tongue down her throat while she was an 18-year-old intern. Saba Naqvi alleged that Akbar often called her to his office and even landed up at her house once. Author and journalist Ghazala Wahab also opened up about her harrowing tale about how he would call her to his office for meaningless talks. She said, "Akbar ran his hands from my breast to my hips."


Akbar sued Priya Ramani, the first woman to name and shame him and said that she has vested interests in maligning his name and reputation. He claims that the entire thing was “wholly and completely false, frivolous, and unjustifiable and scandalous.”


The victim said that she would fight the case but in solidarity, the other 19 journalists said that she wasn’t alone and that they too would testify in court against Akbar.


18. Gautam Adhikari


Gautam Adhikari, the founding editor of DNA Mumbai and former executive editor of the Times of India, resigned after he was accused in multiple allegations of sexual misconduct. Sandhya Menon and Sonora Jha accused him on 5th October and later on, 9th October author Tara Kaushal spoke about how Gautam forcibly tried to kiss her at a party. Read about her #MeToo story here.


In one incident, he was the editor-in-chief of DNA Mumbai, which he co-founded in 2005. In another, he was serving as the executive editor of the Times of India.


19. Chintan Ruparel


Chintan Ruparel, the co-founder of the popular storytelling platform, Terribly Tiny Tales, quit after he was accused of sexual assault by a woman. She wrote a blog talking about how Chintan asked if he could come over to watch a football match. Since he was a former colleague from an ad agency, she agreed. Minutes later he entered her bedroom, uninvited. Three minutes into the game, he looked up from the screen and complimented her 'sexy legs'. Chintan then started kissing the woman, and when she resisted. This incident scarred her and pushed her to a depression so deep she lost her will to live. She visited a local therapist, who she said, checked up on her every third hour to ensure she didn't kill herself.


People Accused In The Art Fraternity


20. Pablo Bartholomew


An incident came into light on 5th October about the celebrated photographer Pablo Bartholomew, who incidentally happens to be Alok Nath's childhood friend... go figure. The photographer has been accused of harassment by a reporter from the industry. 



21. Zulfi Syed


This one with model Zulfi Syed focuses on the lack of consent in today's world and how 'no' is almost never considered a 'NO.' In a Twitter thread shared on October 6, photographer Natasha Hemrajani spoke about how she was consensual about the attraction in the beginning but then made it very clear to him that she didn't want to be in the situation anymore. However, he continued to force himself on her until she fled the scene. 



22. Chetan Bhagat


The author who has gained a lot of publicity by writing books that focus on the Indian market has, on several incidents, been accused of making lewd comments and unrelentlessly making the women around him feel uncomfortable. In other words, being a sleaze. His response? “…I am really sorry to (the) person concerned,” he said. “Maybe I was going through a phase, maybe these things just happen, or maybe I felt the person felt the same too based on our conversations (which I don’t need to repeat here). However, it was stupid of me, to feel that way and to even share that with her.” 


Post the accusations, Rajat shared an apology on his Twitter account stating that he has always tried his best to be a decent human being. Really, though? 


23. Jatin Das


The renowned painter and father of actress, filmmaker, and activist, Nandita Das has been accused of sexual harassment by two women. On October 16, Nisha Bora spoke up about this Padma Bhushan Awardee in a Twitter post she shared on social media. 



Nisha spoke about how he tried to grab her and she ran from his embrace. This story was followed by another survivor, Garusha sharing her story in a Tweet. 



After the stories started pouring in, Nandita Das also tweeted about the same. Saying that she is still with the cause, no matter the accusations being made against her father. 



When asked about the same, Jatin Das, while speaking to a leading news agency called these accusations 'vulgar.' 


"I am shocked. All kinds of things are happening these days... Some people do things and some people make allegations. I don't know her, I have never met her, and even if I did meet somebody somewhere one doesn't behave like this... It is vulgar," he said.


"There is a game going on, some people are real have done some things while some people are making allegations for the fun of it," the artist added.


To all the women who are taking his opportunity to share their story, don't stop, we're listening! 


To read everything about the #MeToo movement, click here.


Images - Instagram


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Published on Oct 25, 2018
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