Following the movement’s rise in Hollywood, #MeToo recently hit Bollywood with former model and actor Tanushree Dutta’s sexual misconduct claim against Nana Patekar. This led to support for Tanushree and also encouraged other celebrities to speak up about their experiences. One of them is Kangana Ranaut, who has accused Queen director Vikas Bahl of making her uncomfortable.
Recently, Hrithik Roshan, who was questioned for starring in the accused’s next film Super 30, broke silence on the subject and asserted that he won’t work with any person who is guilty of such grave misconduct.
The latest person to join the bandwagon is actor Imran Khan, who was last seen in Katti Batti (2015) that didn’t do well at the box office. In a recent interview with Indian Express, he spoke at length on the subject, admitting that Vikas Bahl’s inappropriate behavior was known to everyone in Bollywood.
He said: “Everyone is talking about Vikas Bahl. I have heard his stories from three other actresses – ranging from inappropriate touching to straight up saying that ‘if you were cast in the film, what will I get in return?’ I am telling you what I know directly through the actresses or from the industry… If I am not wrong, everyone in the film industry knew about him.”
“I was at a social gathering 5-6 months ago, with a lot of people and the conversation came about #MeToo movement in Hollywood,” he continued. “At a point, I asked ‘what about Bollywood?’ The Vikas Bahl matter was brushed under the carpet, a few weeks after the news first appeared. I saw him smiling, posing for pictures with every celebrity in the industry. At that point, he started making a film with Hrithik (Roshan). I was like, ‘how a culprit is shunned in Hollywood but here he was making a proper film?’ Everyone was socialising with him so I brought it up at the party and realized that I was the odd one out there.”
Reflecting on the #MeToo movement and people finally speaking up on it, Imran added, “I think it was long long long overdue. There have been times when I wanted to speak out. I was advised to stay quiet because they said people will assume I am trying to grab publicity. They will say I am trying to become relevant and come in the news since my films have not worked well. There are a lot of things that have happened in front of me and bothered me for years. Even after being aware of so many things, I could not say it out because I somewhere felt no one will support me on it.”
Imran also went on to say that he won’t name people but he did narrate some incidents that took place in front of him early in his career and that he cannot be silent about it anymore.