- Should not feel threatened while performing your duties: Anushka
- "It takes a lot of courage," she added
- "That's the reason why a lot of people don't speak," she added
Anushka Sharma is the latest celebrity to have spoken in support of Tanushree Dutta, who has left Bollywood shaken and stirred as she accused Nana Patekar of sexually harassing her on the sets of 2008 film Horn 'OK' Pleassss. Anushka Sharma, who stars in the recent release Sui Dhaaga, hailed Tanushree for opening up about her harrowing experience in an industry known for its practice of the 'casting couch'. "You should not feel threatened while performing your duties, whatever profession you are in. It takes a lot of courage to come out and say these things knowing the tide that you're going to be against. That's the reason why a lot of people don't speak," ANI quoted the actress as saying.
Anushka Sharma's comments resonate with that of her Sui Dhaaga co-star Varun Dhawan, who, speaking at the Jagran Film Festival over the weekend, said he hails Ms Dutta for her courage to be speaking out about an industry, widely seen as male-dominated: "I have been busy with Sui Dhaaga, so I haven't really heard the whole story, but I think what's most important at a work place is respect - whether for a woman, man or a child. We want to make our industry a safe place and everyone deserves equal respect. Also if someone is openly talking about the issue, we should hear them out. It takes great courage to talk about it and I applaud that courage."
Anushka's words are also an echo of the sentiment shared by Farhan Akhtar and Richa Chadha, who were the first celebrities to have publicly supported Ms Dutta. "Her courage should be admired, not her intention questioned," Farhan had written in a tweet while sharing one of the two accounts which backed much of Tanushree Dutta's claims saying they were on set the day Ms Dutta was allegedly harassed. Richa, who is known for speaking her mind out on social media, had also stressed how it "takes a special courage to be Tanushree Dutta." Celebs such as Twinkle Khanna, Priyanka Chopra, Sonam Kapoor, Priyanka Chopra, Anurag Kashyap, Swara Bhasker and others had also tweeted "I believe Tanushree Dutta."
This thread is very telling. @janiceseq85 was there at the time of the incident being debated today. Even when #TanushreeDutta had career concerns to keep quiet 10 years ago she did not & her story hasn’t changed now. Her courage should be admired, not her intention questioned. https://t.co/Ola3MNdmtS— Farhan Akhtar (@FarOutAkhtar) September 27, 2018
It hurts to be #TanushreeDutta rn. To be alone, questioned. No woman wants publicity that opens the floodgates of trolling and insensitivity.What happened to her on set was intimidation.Her only fault was she didn’t back down-takes a special courage to be #TanushreeDutta.— TheRichaChadha (@RichaChadha) September 27, 2018
Tanushree Dutta's striking allegations have surprisingly sparked a bizarre range of reactions from Bollywood, which is in contrast to those in support of the actress. While A-listers such as Amitabh Bachchan, Salman Khan and Aamir Khan dodged the topic at press conferences, Shakti Kapoor appeared to mock the controversy recently. Cine And TV Artistes Association or CINTAA, the film body that Tanushree Dutta complained to 10 years ago, extended an apology to Tanushree Dutta, against who, a defamation case has been filed in Maharashtra for her comments against Raj Thackeray, chief of Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), the political party which is at the epicentre of the actress' allegations.
As part of her accusations for Nana Patekar, Tanushree Dutta claimed Mr Patekar sent thugs from the political outfit after Ms Dutta when she rejected his alleged advances on a film set in 2008. Speaking to NDTV recently, Ms Dutta added that MNS continues to try and intimidate her with fresh threats. Tanushree Dutta has also been served a legal notice by Nana Patekar asking for an apology. The actress has also received a legal notice from filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri who, she claims, asked her to strip on the sets of 2005 film Chocolate. "This is the price you pay for speaking out against harassment, humiliation, and injustice in India," Ms Dutta said of the notices.
Anushka Sharma is currently basking in the glory of the success of Sui Dhaaga. She'll be seen in Shah Rukh Khan's Christmas release Zero.