The MeToo movement in India has gained momentum and exposed several prominent figures from Bollywood in the last few days, due to which several actors, directors and producers have been named and shamed for sexual harassment. However, it seems now one of the accused — Taal director Subhash Ghai, has a major Bollywood icon supporting him against the allegation.
In a recent interview with IANS, veteran actor Shatrughan Sinha was asked about his friend Subhash Ghai, as the two share a good rapport owing to multiple hit films like Kalicharan (1976) and Vishwanath (1978) when they have worked together. The actor said that he strongly believes in the notion of innocent until proven guilty, and further compared the case with Sanjay Dutt.
Subhash Ghai hands in hands with Shatrughan Sinha at an event
“Why not? If he is proven innocent, why not? Even if he is proven guilty, and he serves the punishment given to him, I’d work with him. Sanjay Dutt served his jail sentence and is back working in our largehearted film industry. In fact, we had no problem working with him even when he was an accused in a serious case,” he said.
Shatrughan also spoke about some of the top actors and directors who have vowed about not working with sexual offenders, which the actor-turned-politician termed as ‘hypocrisy.’
“This hypocrisy I can’t understand. They have no problem working with Sanjay Dutt who has been convicted. But they want to blacklist people whose guilt is yet to be proven. Just to look like heroes of the #MeToo movement,” Sinha stated adding, “I don’t want to name anyone. But I will say this ‘Sau choohe khaa kar billi hajj ko chali’ [Pretending to be innocent after many sins]. Those seeking to perch themselves on a high moral ground, should look into their conscience. The problem of sexual exploitation, doesn’t end with some names being put out in the social media. This is just the beginning. The problem runs much deeper.”
Shatrugan Sinha expressed that he is all game for the #MeToo movement and has never in his 40-year career misbehaved with any woman. “I treat every lady with utmost respect. Having said that, I think this #MeToo campaign is being blown out of all proportion. While the cause was definitely noble and praiseworthy, it has now become a free-for-all. Anyone can name and shame anyone. Reputations and jobs are being lost through a trial by media. To all the women who are aggrieved, I say, please go to court and make sure the wrongdoers are punished,” he said.
On the other hand, Subhash Ghai has refuted the accusation where a woman has claimed that he spiked her drink and sexually assaulted her. “It’s becoming a fashion to malign anyone known, bringing some stories from past without any truth or half-truth, if at all,” he stated.