Bollywood director Subhash Ghai on Thursday denied a #MeToo account in which a woman has accused him of drugging and sexually violating her. He has dismissed the allegation, threatened defamation and said the woman should prove it in court.
"It's very sad that it's becoming a fashion to malign anyone known, bringing some stories from the past without any truth or half-truth if (at) all. I deny strictly and firmly all false allegation like these," Ghai said in a statement sent to IANS via Whatsapp.
"I have always respected every woman in my life and at workplace whatsoever... If she claims this way, she should go to a court of law and prove it. Justice will be done. Or I will go for defamation certainly," added the director of films like 'Saudagar', 'Khalnayak' and 'Taal'.
The allegation came to light through Mahima Kukreja, who had first raised her voice against comedian Utsav Chakraborty.
Kukreja shared on her Twitter page screenshots of a private Twitter conversation with a woman who did not wish to be named. Kukreja, however, described the alleged victim as a "credible media/lit personality".
The accuser claims the incident happened when she was working with Ghai on a film. One evening, she says he gave her a drink which was "spiked" and while she thought he was dropping her home, he took her to a hotel that he used to visit often and sexually violated her.
Ghai is among the several celebrities who have been called out as part of the raging #MeToo movement.
Another name that cropped up on Thursday is that of actor-director Sajid Khan, who has been named by multiple women, including two actresses -- Sonali Chopra and Rachel White -- and one journalist.
(With inputs from agencies.)