Everything You Need To Know About India’s Soaring #MeToo Movement
In the wake of escalating global #MeToo Movement, Indian women have also decided to bring their horrific sexual harassment stories in the mainstream. The movement has long failed to take a firm grip in India initially but it seems to be gaining momentum in the recent past, with the accusations of sexual misconduct from a B’ Town actress, Tanushree Dutta, against the veteran, Nana Patekar. She has accused Patekar of inappropriate behavior on the set of a movie 10 years ago. Dutta has also alleged that producer Vivek Agnihotri also behaved improperly while shooting a movie back in 2005.
Ample Bollywood actors, filmmakers and other fragments of the fraternity have taken to social media to pay homage to the actress for her act of immaculate bravery.
This thread is very telling. @janiceseq85 was there at the time of the incident being debated today. Even when #TanushreeDutta had career concerns to keep quiet 10 years ago she did not & her story hasn’t changed now. Her courage should be admired, not her intention questioned. https://t.co/Ola3MNdmtS
— Farhan Akhtar (@FarOutAkhtar) September 27, 2018
— PRIYANKA (@priyankachopra) September 28, 2018
— Parineeti Chopra (@ParineetiChopra) September 28, 2018
Many of my co-workers,female and male have been harassed and bullied, but it’s their story to tell. If we don’t encourage their voices and instead vilify and question them, how will victims ever become survivors? Let them speak up! Stand up with them!
— Sonam K Ahuja (@sonamakapoor) September 28, 2018
Please read this thread. We all know the reality of the power imbalance that exists in the workplace. Let us encourage these voices instead of shaming them so that others may have the strength to come forward. https://t.co/5NefCpWpCs
— Konkona Sensharma (@konkonas) September 28, 2018
If my previous tweet sounds vague let me clarify it. This should stop the questioning of intention of Tanushree Datta because there is a witness account of what happened and @janiceseq85 is as credible as the come .
— Anurag Kashyap (@anuragkashyap72) September 28, 2018
It hurts to be #TanushreeDutta rn. To be alone, questioned. No woman wants publicity that opens the floodgates of trolling and insensitivity.What happened to her on set was intimidation.Her only fault was she didn’t back down-takes a special courage to be #TanushreeDutta.
— TheRichaChadha (@RichaChadha) September 27, 2018
Please read this thread before judging or shaming #TanushreeDutta a working environment without harassment and intimidation is a fundamental right and by speaking up this brave woman helps pave the way towards that very goal for all of us! https://t.co/f8Nj9YWRvE
— Twinkle Khanna (@mrsfunnybones) September 28, 2018
Soon after Dutta’s allegations, an Indian news outlet has published a report engulfed in accusations against director Vikas Bahl. The newspaper has reported that a crew member claimed that Bahl insisted on escorting her to her hotel back in 2015 and pretended to collapse on her bed, only to awaken and harassing her later. The diva, Kangana Ranaut, who worked with him on the 2014 movie, ‘Queen’ has also accused him of burying his face in her neck, holding her “really tight.” The prima donna continues, “It took me a great amount of strength and effort to pull myself out of his embrace.”
The filmmaker, Anurag Kashyap has taken to Twitter to announce the dissolution of ‘Phantom’, a production company which was co-owned by Kashyap and Bahl.
Phantom was a dream, a glorious one and all dreams come to an end . We did our best and we succeeded and we failed. But i know for sure we will come out of this stronger, wiser and will continue to pursue our dreams our own individual ways. We wish each other the best.
— Anurag Kashyap (@anuragkashyap72) October 5, 2018
The man behind bestsellers like ‘Half Girlfriend’ and ‘2 States’, Chetan Bhagat has also been accused of sending text messages to a woman, ignoring her objections of him, being a married man. Bhagat has not only confirmed the veracity of these messages, but he has also apologized to his wife for the act.
Known as Preity Zinta’s uncle in ‘Dil Chahta Hai’ the actor Rajat Kapoor has also been accused of sexual harassment with two women. One of the victims, a journalist, has shared the details of a telephonic conversation in which he allegedly asked her whether she was “As sexy as she sounds,” asking about her “vital stats.” However, the actor has issued an apology via his Twitter account, “If I have slipped and through my actions or words caused pain or hurt or trauma to absolutely anybody, please accept my apology.”
All my life I have tried to be a decent man, to do the right thing.
If however, I have slipped and through my actions or words
caused pain or hurt or trauma to absolutely anybody, please accept my
— Rajat Kapoor (@mrrajatkapoor) October 7, 2018
Recently, an Indian photojournalist, Natasha Hemrajani has alleged that the ‘Teri Deewani’ singer, Kailash Kher tried making her uncomfortable by putting his hand on her thigh, while she was sent to take his photographs along with another journalist.
I was sent with my colleague, a woman journalist, to take pictures of Kailesh Kher at his home for an interview. During the interview, this creep sat between us as close to us as he could. He also kept putting his hands on our thighs (on the skin above our skirts)
— Natasha Hemrajani (@radiantbear) October 6, 2018
The singer has spoken to a news agency to deny these accusations soon after Hemrajani’s tweet. He says, “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.”
In a heart-wrenching Facebook post, a veteran producer, Vinta Nandu has accused the ‘usually good guy’ of Bollywood movies, Alok Nath of rape and brutality, two decades ago. She has alleged him of sexually harassing another lead protagonist and getting her out of the show. She also remembers him offering her a ride and then violating her “endlessly.”
Activist Tarana Burke is unarguably the woman responsible for initiating the #MeToo movement back in 2006, which encourages women to hold each other up, in the instances of sexual harassment. The hashtag has gone viral in 2017 when Alyssa Milano used it in the support of her friend Rose McGowan’s accusations of harassment against Harvey Weinstein.
What are your views on the ongoing wave of #MeToo movement in India? Have your say in the comments’ section below.
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