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#MeToo complaints against Sajid Khan: Family, co-workers upset

Several celebrities’ names have cropped up in the #MeToo movement, leading several others to take a stern stand.

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Mumbai, Oct 12 : As multiple women came out to share their #MeToo experiences with Sajid Khan, the Bollywood director stepped down from his project “Housefull 4”, actor Akshay Kumar cancelled its shoot, and Sajid’s family members Farah Khan and Farhan Akhtar expressed disappointment on Friday.

Sajid has been named by multiple women, including two actresses — Sonali Chopra and Rachel White — and one journalist for sexual misconduct. He has been called out not just for harassment but also for exposing his manhood to women.

In response, Sajid wrote on Twitter: “In the wake of the allegations against me and the pressure being put on my family, my producer and the stars of my film ‘Housefull 4’, I must take the moral responsibility of stepping down from my directorial post, till the time I can allay the allegations and prove the truth… I request my friends in the media to kindly not pass judgment till the truth is out.”

Akshay was disturbed to read about the claims against Sajid, and requested “Housefull 4” producers to cancel the shoot until further investigation. It is noteworthy that the film also features Nana Patekar, who too is accused of sexual misconduct by actress Tanushree Dutta.

“This is something that requires stringent action. I will not work with any proven offenders and all those who have been subjugated to harassment should be heard and given the justice they deserve,” Akshay added.

The accusations against Sajid are heartbreaking for the family, says his filmmaker-sister Farah Khan.

“This is a heartbreaking time for my family. We have to work through some very difficult issues. If my brother has behaved in this manner he has a lot to atone for. I don’t in any way endorse this behaviour and stand in solidarity with any woman who has been hurt,” she tweeted.

Their cousin, actor-filmmaker Farhan Akhtar said he was “shocked, disappointed and heartbroken” to read stories about Sajid’s behaviour.

“I don’t know how, but he will have to find a way to atone for his alleged actions,” he added,

Several celebrities’ names have cropped up in the #MeToo movement, leading several others to take a stern stand.

Before Akshay, Bollywood star Aamir Khan chose to dissociate from a film as someone involved with the project was accused of sexual assault.

Amid the rising number of cases and accounts in this wave, actor Ajay Devgn tweeted: “I’m disturbed by all the happenings with regards to #MeToo. My company and I believe in providing women with utmost respect and safety. If anyone has wronged even a single woman, neither Ajay Devgn Ffilms nor I will stand for it.”

Actor-producer Riteish Deshmukh expressed support for women who have been “extremely brave” to have shared their stories. “All need to be heard and not judged. I stand with them today.”

“Pink” actress Taapsee Pannu tweeted: “More than the names it’s the description of the way things happened is what is disturbing me the most. Makes me have this terrible feeling that we have discovered only the tip of this iceberg.”

Actor Aparshakti Khurana made a pertinent point.

He said: “It is really unfortunate that we have to start this kind of a movement to bring sexual harassment stories in forefront. People are expressing their views on social media about this issue, but there is a larger population which is not on social media and they also might be going through these circumstances but they don’t have platform to share their stories.

“So, we also need masses to come out and talk about it. Sometimes people can also take unnecessary advantage of a situation, so, I hope everything is going in the right direction. I am really glad that people are coming out to share their stories which will curb anti-social elements of the society.”

IANS

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Emphasis on opening weekend biz damaging art of cinema: Swara Bhasker

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Swara Bhaskar

Mumbai, Feb 16 (IANS) Actress Swara Bhasker says the constant emphasis on a films box office collection is damaging the art of cinema.

“The whole system of emphasising the opening weekend business of a film is damaging the art of cinema. I believe there is no connection between the box office collection and the value of a film or to the artistic part of it,” Swara said during a session at ActFest here on Saturday.

“I understand that cinema is an art that involves a huge amount of finance and it demands a steady economy… But the business part of a film should not overpower the core of a cinema — storytelling,” the actress said.

The “Veere Di Wedding” star continued: “Some of the cult films were flops at the box office when they were released. Now, when we revisit those films, we call them classics. I think this system needs to be changed.”

Swara expressed her views during a session with filmmaker Raj Kumar Gupta along with film critics like Rajeev Masand.

ActFest is being organised by the CINTAA (Cine and TV Artistes’ Association). The two-day festival features popular artists participating in discussions, conducting workshops or giving lectures on various aspects of the art. The event, which started on Friday, is conceived and designed by The 48 Hour Film Project, India.

Talking about how film critics’ opinions played a part in her journey, Swara said: “I am grateful to critics because I started my career with small independent films. And when I played some of the pivotal roles like the one in ‘Tanu Weds Manu’ even though that wasn’t a lead role, critics repeatedly mentioned my performance and according to them I was good.”

The actress feels “somewhere positive reviews helped me to gain visibility”.

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Gurugram musical show attracts protest

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Protest during Gurugram musical show (Picture Credit : @DailyWorldChd )

Gurugram, Feb 16 (IANS) Over 500 members of different Hindu organisations held protests at the Leisure Valley Park where a private company had organised a musical show on Saturday.

The protesters claimed it was wrong for the company to organise a musical show for enjoyment and raising funds when the entire country was mourning the death of 49 CRPF troopers, killed in a terror attack in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Thursday.

Protesters threatened to disrupt the event if the organisers did not cancel the programme.

“We have written to the Police Commissioner and the Deputy Commissioner of Gurugram to initiate the process of cancelling the event. Musical shows are meant for celebration, not when there is sadness across the country. This is not acceptable,” said Pramod Goyal, the convener the of Bharat Tibet Sahyog Manch.

“We have objections over celebration, not against any private company. The time they have chosen for organising the event is wrong. Even if preparations for the event began before Thursday’s terror attack, the organisers should have postponed it and stood with the country to show solidarity,” said Kulbhushan Bhardwaj, senior Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) leader, who led the protest along with members of Bajrang Dal, Hindu Kranti Dal, Hindu Jagran Manch, Hindu Sena and Shiv Sena.

Subhash Bokan, PRO of Gurugram Police, said: “We are aware of the protest and have deployed extra security personnel at the venue to maintain law and order and prevent loss of property. We are waiting for organisers to take a decision.”

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Navjot Singh Sidhu sacked from The Kapil Sharma Show for comments on Pulwama attack

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Navjot Singh Sidhu
Navjot Singh Sidhu met with harsh criticism after he spoke about the Pulwama terror attack.

New Delhi, Feb 16: Cricketer turned Politician Navjot Singh Sidhu has been sacked from the ‘The Kapil Sharma Show’ following his controversial comments on the Pulwama terror attack.

“The channel has already started with the process of removing Navjot and will replace him with Arachana Puran singh, news agency ANI quoted the sources as saying.

Reacting on the Pulwama terror attack, which left 40 CRPF personnel killed, Sidhu on Friday had stated “For a handful of people, can you blame the entire nation and can you blame an individual? It is a cowardly act and I condemn it firmly. Violence is always condemnable and those who did it must be punished,”.

The former cricketer’s comments were met with harsh criticism and since then social media has been flooded with posts demanding his exit from The Kapil Sharma Show.

Check out some of the tweets below:

This is not the first time Sidhu has landed himself in soup for his soft stand on our neighbouring country.

Sidhu had triggered a controversy last year when he attended Pakistan Prime Minister, Imran Khan’s swearing-in-ceremony. He was much criticised for hugging Pakistan Army chief, General Qamar Javed Bajwa as well.

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