“I deny strictly and firmly all false allegations like these,” said Subhash Ghai
NEW DELHI, OCt 12: On Thursday, filmmaker Subhash Ghai strongly denied the allegations made against him after his name cropped up in the #MeToo account of an alleged survivor, who accused Mr. Ghai of allegedly raping her a ‘long time ago’ after having spiked her drink. Dismissing the #MeToo movement as a ‘fashion’ in his response to the rape allegation, Mr. Ghai told news agency PTI: “It is sad that it is becoming a fashion to malign anyone known, bringing some stories from past without any truth or blown up false allegations if all. I deny strictly and firmly all false allegations like these.” In a separate interview to ANI, he reiterated his previous words and added he’s always been respectful towards women: “I’ve always respected every woman in my life and at workplace.”
Subhash Ghai was implicated in the #MeToo allegations after Twitter user Mahima Kukreja, who initially accused AIB’s former member Utsav Chakraborty of having sent her pictures of his genitalia, re-shared an account originally narrated to her by a woman, who wished to be unnamed. In her tweet, Ms. Kukreja referred to the alleged survivor as “a very credible media/lit personality.” The accumulated screenshots shared by Ms. Kukreja recounts that Mr. Ghai allegedly steered the survivor to his hotel suite after sharing drinks in his car, following which she was allegedly raped and violated.
Meanwhile, Subhash Ghai also told PTI that he would not back out from taking legal action against the allegations hurled at him and will sue the woman in concern. “If she claims this way, she should go to the court of law and prove it. Justice will be done or I will go for defamation certainly,” said Mr. Ghai.
In the same #MeToo account, Subhash Ghai has also been accused of forcibly trying to kiss and touching the woman inappropriately several times before the alleged rape. In her account, the woman claimed to be working with Mr. Ghai at the time, and would often be invited to late-night sessions at his place of work.
Subhash Ghai apart, India’s #MeToo movement has witnessed industry celebrities such as Alok Nath, Nana Patekar, Kailash Kher, Rajat Kapoor and Vikas Bahl, among others, outed as alleged sexual predators.
Two weeks after Tanushree Dutta revived a decade-old allegation of harassment against Nana Patekar, accusing him of sexual misconduct on the sets of a 2008 film, former TV series writer Vinta Nanda accused Alok Nath of raping and brutalizing her 19 years ago in a lengthy Facebook post. Following Ms. Nanda’s account, allegations have piled up against Alok Nath from actresses Sandhya Mridul and Deepika Amin and an anonymous member from the crew of 1999 film Hum Saath-Saath Hain. Top film bodies have sent legal notices to the actor, who responded to the allegations against him saying he ‘neither denies nor agrees with’ Ms. Nanda’s account of rape. Meanwhile, Nana Patekar has also sent Tanushree Dutta a legal notice demanding she apologies.
On Wednesday, Aamir Khan and his wife Kiran Rao issued a joint statement announcing that they are ‘stepping away’ from a film because of sexual misconduct allegations against a team member, who is believed to be Subhash Kapoor (who was to direct Gulshan Kumar biopic Mogul, to be produced by Aamir Khan). Soon after, Mogul producer Bhushan Kumar told Indian Express that Subhash Kapoor is no longer part of the film. Mr. Kapoor is accused of molesting actor Geetika Tyagi in 2014 and the matter is in court.
(With agency inputs)