Hollywood is pretty much shaking lately with the rise of the #MeToo movement and the increasing cases of sexual harassment and abuses against some renowned actors. Even Bollywood isn’t far behind.
Ten years ago, actress Tanushree Dutta who has appeared in films like “Aashiq Banaya Aapne,” “Dhol,” and many others accused Nana Patekar, an established and celebrated figure in Bollywood industry of sexually harassing her on the set of their film.
Tanushree Dutta 34 who was filming a special song sequence for her 2008 film “Horn ‘Ok’ Pleassss” starring the two stars. During the shooting Tanushree claims that Nana Patekar who didn’t even have any parts in the song showed up on the set and made sexual advances at her.
As a result, she walked out of the set and locked herself inside her vanity van. And only got out of it as her parents came to pick her up on the set.
Her accusations do not stop there. She further accused Patekar of involving the MNS (Maharashtra Navnirman Sena), a political party whose members attacked her vehicle as she was leaving the premises. Watch the video below.
It’s not just Nana Patekar who is under the radar, choreographer Ganesh Acharya, producer Sami Siddique, and director Rakesh Sarang is also the people the 34-year-old actress accuses of supporting Nana while she was being harassed.
“There was a lie that was spun by the four culprits; Nana Patekar, choreographer Ganesh Acharya, director Rakesh Sarang and producer Sami Siddique as well as their supporters on set and outside the set; The MNS (Maharashtra Navnirman Sena) party who were called to mob attack me.”
The former Miss India Universe has also accused another Bollywood big names, director Vivek Agnihotri of the film “Chocolate” who allegedly told her to “take off your clothes and dance” while filming a song.
However, two of her co-stars Suniel Shetty and Irrfan Khan rushed to her rescue and spoke up for her.
Sexual harassment cases aren’t anything new. It happens everywhere and every field imaginable. And what matters the most is the ability of the victim to come out and speak about it.
A lot of Bollywood celebrities have been speaking about how important it is, especially for a female actor to feel comfortable and safe in the workplace. Something Tanushree wasn’t feeling when the whole thing went down.
When the actress addressed the incident that she went through ten years ago, nobody paid much attention. But ten years later when the issue is getting heated one more time, there are people questioning her intentions.
Nana Patekar Denies the Accusations.
When asked about all the accusations he has been facing ten years later, Nana Patekar clearly denied them.
“What does she mean by sexual harassment? There were 50-100 people on set with me [at that time]…”
According to Nana Patekar’s lawyers, they have apparently sent legal notice seeking an apology to Tanushree for making false allegations against the actor.
“She has made false allegations and has spoken untruth. We will send the notice later today which will be basically a notice seeking apology for her statements making allegations.”
However, Tanushree claims that she hasn’t got any legal notice from anyone and that Nana Patekar needs to “step up his game”.
Celebrities’ Reaction and Support.
Actor and Item dancer Rakhi Sawant, who apparently replaced Tanushree in the song now accuses the actress of lying and trying to frame Nana Patekar for something he did not do.
“Nana is a very shy person. I think Tanushree is a liar. Where was she all these years? I am surprised as to why she is abusing everyone after ten years. I don’t think the film industry is supporting her. They are showing their sympathy towards her but no one is blaming Nana Patekar. Nana is a very soft person. He might come across as rough and tough on screen but he is a very decent person.”
Other celebrities like Priyanka Chopra, Sonam Kapoor, Twinkle Khanna, Parineeti Chopra, and many others showed their support via Twitter saying they are with her in this fight.
Tanushree is very much overwhelmed by the support she has been receiving this time around. However, she is “hurt” by the comment veteran actor Amitabh Bachchan made while asked about the controversy.
He apparently evaded the question saying his name is neither Tanushree Dutta nor Nana Patekar.
Recently, the actress released a statement saying she would return in a while and continue the fight as she’s been fighting this battle continuously.
“I only come out and interact socially and even speak only when need be for work or other social commitments. But last few days I’ve had to go all out talking and interacting with press up to 16 hours a day for the sake of this movement and it has drained me out a bit. Im resting to regain some strength while some other developments take place in the back ground. I will be back in few days and join the fight again. This is not just a news story anymore my friends. This is a war that I have been called to partake in for not only my sake but for the sake for countless millions..It is my dharma; my duty as a human being.”
Tanushree Dutta 34 started her Bollywood career in 2005 by appearing in films “Chocolate” and “Aashiq Banaya Aapne”. She won the Femina Miss India Universe in 2003 and represented India at the Miss Universe 2004 Pageant in Quito, Ecuador where she was among the top ten finalists.