Actress Tanushree Dutta opened up about the harassment she faced while filming a song sequence for the 2009 film Horn Ok Pleassss and named the perpetrator for the first time.
In an interview with Zoom TV, she went ahead and accused Nana Patekar for his alleged misbehaviour.
“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 behaviour with women has always been crude but no publication has printed anything about it,” Dutta was quoted in an NDTV report.
The incident in question involved a song which Dutta was supposed to shoot for. According to her, Patekar insisted on being a part of the song even though it was mentioned as a solo song in her contract.
“I would feel very uncomfortable when he would come next to me and try to put his arm around me. He’d grab me and push me around and say, ‘You stand here, you stand there’. Whereas, he shouldn’t have been on the set. And he told the choreographer to stand aside and said, ‘I’ll teach her how to dance’. I didn’t know how to deal with this. This had never happened with me before in Bollywood,” Dutta was quoted by Quint.
She also said that she had voiced her concerns to choreographer Ganesh Acharya and director Rakesh Sarang who paid no heed to her concerns. Dutta was replaced by Rakhi Sawant after the incident.
Dutta, who debuted in Bollywood with Aashiq Banaya Aapne in 2005, said that unless mainstream actors like Rajnikanth and Akshay Kumar boycotted Patekar, the work environment would continue to remain in the pathetic state. Patekar played the main antagonist in Rajinikanth’s last film Kaala.
While Nana Patekar had refuted the claims in a press conference back in 2008 when the incident made headlines he has taken up legal action against Dutta.
In process of sending legal notice to Tanushree Dutta as she has made false allegations&has spoken untruth. We will send the notice later today which will be basically a notice seeking apology for her statements making allegations: Nana Patekar's lawyer Rajendra Shirodkar to ANI. pic.twitter.com/uoKL1Vwqon
— ANI (@ANI) September 28, 2018
Meanwhile, the Women in Cinema Collective, WCC has proclaimed support for the actress. The organization through a statement said that “While many are forced into silence due to lack mechanisms for redressal, her brave stand is a stepping stone towards justice.”
A number of stars have spoken about the incident.
Without knowing the veracity of something, it's not right for me to comment on it. But whenever something like this does happen, it's a sad thing. Whether this has happened, that is for people to investigate it: Aamir Khan on Tanushree Dutta accusing Nana Patekar of harassment. pic.twitter.com/SCyofoF7Xs
— ANI (@ANI) September 27, 2018
— ANI (@ANI) September 27, 2018
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
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
— Swara Bhasker (@ReallySwara) September 27, 2018
If a women speaks out about abuse, you listen. Even if it's on her deathbed 50 years after the incident,you listen. If you ask why she didn't speak earlier or you rush to dismiss her, the problem is with you. There will be investigation; but first, listen. Period. #TanushreeDutta
— Siddharth (@Actor_Siddharth) 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
Image Courtesy: News18