Trigger Warning: The following article contains details about sexual assault and violence. The details may be traumatic for survivors. Reader discretion is advised.
The #MeToo movement that’s currently raging across social media and is naming and shaming alleged sexual predators has hit another prominent filmmaker after Vikas Bahl.
Aamir Khan and Kiran Rao on Wednesday released a statement that they are distancing themselves from a project because it involved someone who has been “accused of sexual misconduct”, without naming the filmmaker. While the statement states that the particular case is subjudice and that they are in no position to pass judgement on anyone, it went on to say - “without casting any aspersions on anyone involved in this case, and without coming to any conclusions about these specific allegations, we have decided to step away from this film.”
The filmmaker in question here is Subhash Kapoor, who was to direct the biopic Mogul on the late music baron Gulshan Kumar’s life. The film was supposed to be co-produced by T-series and Aamir Khan Productions.
In February 2014, actor Geetika Tyagi had accused Subhash Kapoor of molesting her. Geetika alleged that Subhash Kapoor had forced himself on her and dragged her into a room during a party. Geetika had also uploaded a video in which she and filmmaker Atul Sabharwal confront Subhash Kapoor and his wife about the assault. Subhash confesses to the incident and is seen to be apologetic about it, Geetika while breaking down in the video slaps Subhash to let out her anger.
Subhash Kapoor was arrested in June 2014 after Geetika Tyagi filed an FIR against him. The actor had also tweeted about it.
Subhash Kapoor has been arrested today— Geetika Tyagi (@TyagiGeetika) June 23, 2014
However, after he was released on bail, Subhash Kapoor went on to make films like Guddu Rangeela (2015) and Jolly LLB 2 (2017).
On Monday, after the Mumbai Film Festival dropped films by Rajat Kapoor and the AIB from their line up because their names came up in the #MeToo movement, Geetika tweeted out a message reminding Kiran Rao that Aamir Khan was working with filmmaker Subhash Kapoor on the Gulshan Kumar biopic.
Although @MumbaiFilmFest hs disassociated itslf frm directors&producer whose names have come out in #Metoo movement but I hope its chairperson #KiranRao remembers tht @aamir_khan her husband hmslf is working wth #subhashkapoor who’s being prosecuted for sexual assault&molestation— Geetika Tyagi (@TyagiGeetika) October 9, 2018
It sure looks like Geetika’s reminder to Kiran Rao has had its desired effect.
“I understand and respect Aamir Khan’s and Kiran Rao’s decision. Since matter is subjudice, I intend to prove my innocence in the court of law. But I do want to raise a question – is secretly filming a crying woman without her consent and knowledge and uploading it on social media not harassment or abuse?” Subhash Kapoor said in his statement. He went on to term it a Khaap Panchayat mentality, if the answer to his question is in the affirmative.
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