Following allegations of sexual harassment by women on social media, comedian Utsav Chakraborty has apologized openly on Twitter.
In a series of tweets Utsav, said, “To be honest, from all accounts, I’ve been a piece of s**t. And I will try to do everything I can work past that. There was no excuse. I know inconsiderate and entitled. Even in this narrative, when this whole thing started, I kept looking at myself as the victim.”
Soon after the news broke out, Comedy group AIB decided to take down every video featuring Utsav, a former member. Women complained that Utsav kept sending his unsolicited nude pictures to them.
I want everyone to know @Wootsaw is a piece of shit. He sent me a dick pic, was creepy, then cried saying I’ll ruin his career if I tell others. I told two of the most influential men in comedy in India. Nothing happened. Let me tell you what else he has done with others.
— Mahima Kukreja (@AGirlOfHerWords) October 4, 2018
AIB wrote a letter on Twitter, calling Utsav’s behaviour unacceptable.
“We are also aware that by extending safe working spaces and a collaborative environment to people like Utsav, we have contributed towards a toxic environment that can be scary and unsafe for women. And so we are sorry for any part we may have played in the tolerance or furthering of such behaviour,” AIB said in a statement posted on Twitter.
“If these allegations result in any investigation, the team at AIB would be willing to cooperate and extend full support to it. Also, pending the result of any such investigation, we are immediately delisting every single video on our channels that feature Utsav,” it said.
Another comedian, Abhishek Upmanyu, said, “Everything is true. And also a lot of people knew and still worked with him.”
Comedian Kunal Kamra wrote:
We as a scene, specifically the men here, need to reexamine everything right now. I myself am guilty of being part of a culture where we haven't listened to the women. And this is the wake up call we need.
We are listening.
And we believe you.
— Kunal Kamra (@kunalkamra88) October 4, 2018
Mumbai Police, on the other hand, replied to the tweet by the woman, saying, “We have followed you. Request you to inbox your number. We will look into this on priority.”
In 2020, Utsav reached out to SheThePeople via DMs and email and said he has proof that many of the allegations were unfounded. He said, “There’s an hourlong phonecall where Kukreja’s basically threatening me to not release screenshots. Three women apologized. On record. To me. Not out of the goodness of their heart, but because they were caught – lying, fabricating accounts. 7 women deleted their accounts for the same reason.”
He further added, “I am beginning to feel like I’m the tether between these two worlds. The Indian men’s rights folks and the feminist cliques. I see both their perspectives and I see how both can be disastrously wrong.”
Feature Image Credit: Facebook/Utsav Chakraborty