#MeToo: Woman accuses Rajkumar Hirani of sexual assault during making of ‘Sanju’

Hirani’s lawyer Anand Desai, however, denied the allegations and called it ‘false and completely unjustified’.

Renowned Bollywood filmmaker Rajkumar Hirani has been accused of sexual assault by a woman. The accuser has said that Hirani sexually abused her more than once over a six-month period between March and September 2018, during the post-production work of Sanju, the Sanjay Dutt biopic which released on June 29, 2018, reported HuffPost India.

The woman alleged the above mentioned in an email addressed to Sanju co-producer Vidhu Vinod Chopra on November 3, 2018. Other recepients of the email included Anupama Chopra, the director of the Mumbai Film Festival (MAMI), scriptwriter Abhijat Joshi, and Shelly Chopra, Vidhu Vinod’s sister, and the director of the upcoming film Ek Ladki Ko Dekha To Aisa Laga.

“I remember forming these words on my lips – “Sir. This is wrong… Because of this power structure. You being the absolute power and me being a mere assistant, a nobody – I will never be able to express myself to you. My mind, body and heart were grossly violated that night and for the next 6 months,” the email read.

In an interview to HuffPost, the woman said that she had “no other choice but to be polite to him” since her job was at stake. “I had no choice but to be polite to him. 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 woman said. “Because if Hirani said I wasn’t good, everybody would listen. My future would be in jeopardy,” she added.

Hirani’s lawyer Anand Desai, however, denied the allegations and called it “false and completely unjustified”. “At the outset, our client states that the allegations made against him are false, mischievous, scandalous, motivated and defamatory,” read a statement.

“These communications establish that the allegations made against our client to you, that have given rise to your queries, are false and completely unjustified,” said Anand Desai with support from the printouts of the text messages shared between Rajkumar Hirani shared and the complainant over the period of six months.

As per HuffPost, after the allegations against Rajkumar Hirani came to fore, his name has been dropped from the posters of Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga which he was co-producing.