Another #MeToo: This Time It’s ‘Queen’ Director Vikas Bahl
Yet another sexual harassment case in Bollywood, which was buried in 2015, has come to light. Vikas Bahl, the acclaimed director of the movie Queen, was charged with harassment by a woman who earlier worked with Phantom Films. While filmmaker Anurag Kashyap recently announced the dissolution of Phantom Films, the woman said that Bahl had sexually assaulted her during the promotional tour of Bombay Velvet. In one of her interviews, she recounted how it took her so much time and therapy to get out of the trauma.
The woman had told Kashyap about the incident then, but no action was taken. Bahl had harassed her after the event as well till she left the company. In 2017, Kashyap and his girlfriend worked on legal ways to resolve the issue. Kashyap explained his views and announced the dissolution of Phantom in his recent tweet.
Phantom was a dream, a glorious one and all dreams come to an end . We did our best and we succeeded and we failed. But i know for sure we will come out of this stronger, wiser and will continue to pursue our dreams our own individual ways. We wish each other the best.
— Anurag Kashyap (@anuragkashyap72) October 5, 2018
Kangana Ranaut speaks up against Bahl
The Queen protagonist, Kangana Ranaut, has come forward and supported the women. Going back in past, she recounted her own experiences with Bahl. “Totally believe her. Even though Vikas was married back in 2014 when we were filming Queen, he bragged about having casual sex with a new partner every other day. I don’t judge people and their marriages but you can tell when addiction becomes sickness. He partied every night and shamed me for sleeping early and not being cool enough.”
Kangana goes on to say how Bahl would hug her, bury his head on her neck and say, “I love how you smell K”.
Asked about her views about Bahl when this harassment news broke out, Kangana, expressed her displeasure. “Shame on such a society, go look at yourselves in the mirror bunch of cowards. Attacking powerless men won’t begin a movement. Let’s not be opportunists. Selective outrage will only serve as entertainment, this will just be tabloid gossip and nothing else.”
The incident adds to the sordid tales in our film industry. Actor Ahana Kumar rightly says that “Bollywood is becoming like men’s changing room”. After Tanushree Dutta’s case, we see many actors and directors supporting the woman on social media. However it is still a long, very long way to go.
Shocking how this terrible man was shielded for so long…. the silence V V SAD.
I have recently seen this silence and apathy towards another incident of assault . I hope things are changing #metoohttps://t.co/j4bTDH1oa7
— Onir (@IamOnir) October 6, 2018
The hushed whispers are getting louder and are finally being heard. We all need to be in it together. Let’s give courage to those who want to speak up but haven’t felt able to yet. https://t.co/d2mvRYPYPV
— Nandita Das (@nanditadas) October 6, 2018
Rachna Chandira is an intern with SheThePeople.Tv