New Delhi: Bollywood actress Kangana Ranaut says she was harassed several times by actors on film sets, but although it wouldn’t fall under #MeToo movement as it wasn’t sexual, the experience was daunting and humiliating.
The actor said harassment can happen on several levels and she has faced toxic behaviour from many people in her career. “Harassment happens on many levels. So many times on sets, I wasn’t sexually harassed, but some people had ego issues. I was harassed on many other fronts. It wouldn’t come under #MeToo but it was still harassment,” Kangana told PTI.
Talking about her harrowing experiences, Kangana said, “Making me wait on set for six hours, willingly giving me wrong call time to make me stand, always giving me the wrong set of dates so I’m missing out on opportunities and then cancelling the schedule last minute by these heroes.”
“Ganging up on me and not inviting me to film events, launching trailers without me and then someone else dubbed for me without even telling me, which is violating the basic right of taking permission from an actor,” she added.
Supporting Rani Mukerji’s stance that women should be taught martial arts to keep themselves safe, Kangana said a woman needs to be responsible for her own safety. She added that it was sad that Rani was trolled for her comments.
Citing her personal experience, the Queen actress reiterated that women cannot expect another person to be responsible for their safety. “I was pinched on my butt in the middle of a group and that person was right there, looking at me. It was not even sexual, it was like ‘I did exactly what I was not supposed to do’. And looking me in the eye like ‘what are you going to do now?’ So, what do you expect?”
She urged that a woman’s safety also lies in the fact that she can go to someone “who can save you; it may be a teacher, an uncle you trust, a friend, or the Mumbai Police, or go to the media, find a journalist and expose them.”
The Tanu Weds Manu star said that because of the #MeToo movement, men in the industry are scared. “People are scared, obviously and they should be. Men are scared in the industry. This isn’t going to stop. This will continue till we really go into the root cause of it because essentially it’s a patriarchal society which is extremely chauvinistic,” she said.
“We need to come to a point where they are scared. All the talks of ‘what if women lose work’ should stop. I believe there’s no life without dignity. You shouldn’t worry about raising your voice,” Kangana added.
The actress had come out in support of the survivor when allegations of sexual harassment were levelled against Queen director Vikas Bahl.
“On film sets there have to be strict rules and strict action should be taken. Things can’t be solved on a personal level or behind closed doors. Things should be taken to authority and immediate action is the need of the hour. When anyone raises concern, people-director, producer or anyone-need to solve it. We need to become more sensitive about these things,” she said.
Kangana will soon be seen in Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi which releases on January 25. The ambitious period-drama features her in the titular role and has been directed by Krish and herself.
(With inputs from Agencies)