26 Oct 2020: Actor accuses Mahesh Bhatt of harassment; her husband rubbishes claims
A few days ago, actor-model Luviena Lodh accused filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt's family of harassment.
Saying that she is married to Bhatt's "nephew" Sumit Sabherwal, she claimed that the latter "supplied drugs and women" to members of the film industry.
However, Sumit has now released a statement through his lawyers, rubbishing her claims. He also denied being related to Bhatt family.
Here's more on this.
Statement: Sumit said he is an employee of Bhatt brothers' company
"The claims and contents of the video being circulated by our client's estranged wife Mrs. Luveena Lodh are denied...Our client expresses his deepest regret that the good name of Mr. Mahesh Bhatt & Mr. Mukesh Bhatt is being sullied (sic)," the lawyers' statement read.
Sumit is not related to Bhatt brothers but is an employee of their production company Vishesh Films, the statement added.
Fact: He called the allegations a 'well-crafted conspiracy'
"Every attempt being made in order to formulate a relation between our client and Bhatt brothers must be construed as a well-crafted conspiracy to precipitate and motivate a lucrative 'settlement' for her (matrimonial) disputes with our client," the statement further read.
Allegations: Luviena had called Bhatt 'biggest don of film industry'
In her video, Luviena had claimed that she is the "wife of Mahesh Bhatt's nephew."
She alleged that Sumit supplied "drugs and women" to various actors and directors.
Calling Bhatt "the biggest don of this industry," she added, "If you don't play by his rules, he will make life difficult for you...He has ruined a lot of lives by putting them out of work."
Fact: Luviena said that despite complaint, no action was taken
"He (Bhatt) makes one phone call and people lose their job...He has been trying to enter my house and remove me from this house...Even if I manage to file a complaint, no action is taken," she had added in the video.
Case: Bhatt brothers denied allegations, filed defamation suit
Notably, Mahesh and Mukesh Bhatt have denied the allegations against them.
They also filed a defamation case against Luviena in the Bombay High Court, seeking Rs. 1 crore in damages and an order restraining her from making such claims in future.
"Such allegations are not only false and defamatory but have serious consequences in law," lawyers representing Bhatt brothers said in a statement.
Fact: Mukesh Bhatt said Sumit is an employee of 20 years
In an interaction with The Times of India, Mukesh Bhatt said, "As mentioned in our defamation plaint submitted in the courts today...Sumit Sabharwal is only an employee in my production company Vishesh Films for over 20 years as opposed to Ms. Luveena Lodh's claims (sic)."