Actor Tanushree Dutta, who kick-started the conversation around sexual harassment in Bollywood by recounting her own experience in 2008, says many stars haven’t taken any stand because they consider MeToo movement a controversy rather than a watershed for women’s position in society at large.
Superstars like Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan, Ajay Devgn, Ranbir Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor, Ranveer Singh and Karan Johar are yet to comment on the movement, which has seen many women name and shame men like Sajid Khan, Subhash Ghai, Nana Patekar and Rajat Kapoor.
Today, at the Mumbai Manthan 2018, Tanushree Dutta was in conversation with journalist Rajdeep Sardesai. Reacting to Bollywood stars’ deafening silence, she said, “They are considering it a controversy. They aren’t considering it a movement. When we consider something a controversy, we wait for it to get over. We wait for it to pass on. That’s what happened (even) 10 years ago.”
Tanushree, who was allegedly sexually harassed by Nana Patekar on the set of their film Horn Ok Please in 2008, had spoken about the incident immediately after it happened. Not many listened, and her story was soon forgotten. She also had to bid goodbye to her acting career.
“At that time, I was on national TV for three days, not for the right reasons. I had a lot to lose. I knew I had a career ahead of me. I was popular then. I was put in a situation where I had to defend myself because when after that incident unfolded, there was a smear campaign against me.
“I didn’t speak because I wanted to be a hero. I spoke because I wanted to defend myself. But the whole thing came and went like a controversy,” Tanushree said.
When asked if she would like to say something to Nana Patekar, Tanushree Dutta said her lawyers were already talking on her behalf and she had no interest in engaging with someone, who rather than owning up to his mistake, called her a liar.