Actor Dia Mirza has reacted to the sexual harassment allegations against filmmaker Rajkumar Hirani. Talking to an entertainment portal, the actor said that she’s ‘distressed’ by the news. The actress, who has worked in Hirani’s two directorial-Sanju (2018) and Lage Raho Munna Bhai (2006), said it would be ‘unjust’ on her part to speak in detail on the issue since she isn’t aware of all the facts.
Dia talked to Pinkvilla and said, “I am deeply distressed by this news. As someone who has known and respects Raju Sir for 15 years, I can only hope that a due official inquiry is conducted. He is one of the most decent human beings I have ever worked with and I think it would be grossly unjust on my part to speak on this as I do not know the details”.
A report published on Huff Post on January 13, 2019, claimed that a woman accused Rajkumar Hirani of sexually harassing her more than once over a period of six months on the sets of Sanju. The filmmaker denied all the allegations and released a statement saying he was in shock to hear about the allegations that were brought to his notice a few months back. In his statements to Bombay Times, published on Twitter, he said, “I was completely shocked when these allegations were brought to my notice about two months back”. He also questioned the woman’s decision of reaching out to the media to express her story. He added, “I had suggested immediately that it is essential to take this matter to any committee or any legal body. The complainant has chosen to go to the media instead. I want to very strongly state that this is a false, malicious and mischievous story being spread with the sole intention of destroying my reputation”.
Woman’s statement against Rajkumar Hirani (Photo Courtesy: Getty Images/ India.com)
The entire harassment issue is the reason why Hirani’s name has been omitted from the credits on the poster and promos of Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga.
Here’s what the complainant said in her statement to the website: “I had no choice but to be polite to him. It was unbearable but the reason I endured it all until I couldn’t, was because I didn’t want my job to be taken away from me, and work to be questioned. Ever I was worried that if I left midway, it would be impossible to find another job in this industry if he were to speak badly about my work”.
The filmmaker’s close friend and partner Vidhu Vinod Chopra has refused to comment on the issue. However, his wife and popular journalist Anupama Chopra said, “I’ve met the complainant twice. Both times, I have offered my full support and recommended that she take the complaint to a legal body or a neutral party since we cannot be arbitrators or judges on this. We also offered to set up an ICC at VCF (which we have set up since then) even though a VCF ICC could not have taken up the case since she was an RHF (Rajkumar Hirani Films) employee at the time. These are two separate companies”.