‘I Believe Tanushree Dutta’ says Freida Pinto in powerful post

‘I Believe Tanushree Dutta’ says Freida Pinto in powerful post

“Today, I interrupt my feed for a bit from all the fashion week poses to stand by what I truly believe. I believe Tanushree Dutta,” read the opening lines of actress Freida Pinto’s powerful post on the controversy that has raged through the film industry this last few eventful days. Dutta has accused Nana Patekar of harassing and threatening her on a film set 10 years ago, and Freida Pinto’s is the latest voice of support for her. In her lengthy Instagram post, Freida wrote, “I don’t need to know her personally, neither have been present on that horrendous day she got bullied, abused both sexually and psychologically, intimidated and shut down inorder to corroborate her story. However, I do know what truth, hurt and abuse sounds like.”
The Love Sonia star drew a parallel with Dr Christine Blasey Ford, who has accused US President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her when she was a teenager. Dr Ford’s televised testimony to the US Senate triggered not only a nationwide outpouring of emotion but also prompted Republican Senator Jeff Flake to set in motion an FBI investigation into Judge Kavanaugh’s alleged conduct.
“The same way millions of people in the world know that Dr Christine Blasey Ford is NOT a Liar or an attention seeking, tantrum throwing overgrown child,” wrote Pinto.
Freida Pinto also underlined that time does not erase the crime. Many more years than 10 have passed since Brett Kavanaugh allegedly assaulted Dr Ford but, as Pinto wrote, “If someone speaks up (in Tanushree’s case speaks up again) 10 years later, it doesn’t dilute or nullify a factual, verified truth. Her story is not a carton of milk that expires after a few days, ready to be discarded.”
“I add my voice to the other voices coming out in support of Tanushree’s bravery because God knows this is not going to be easy for you, Tanushree. But what you have done is monumental and important and it has to shake the very core of a nation and an ideology that for too long has gotten away with heinous crimes against women and where the ugliness of misogyny has dominated the rights and suppressed any voice that has dared to speak up,” Freida Pinto wrote.
Tanushree Dutta’s version of events has partly been corroborated by a female journalist and an assistant director, also female, on the film she was working on with Nana Patekar 10 years ago. On Twitter, both women confirmed that they saw Dutta’s trailer surrounded by goons and her car, with her parents inside, attacked. Dutta alleges that Nana Patekar sent political thugs after her when she rejected his advances while filming a song.
Tanushree Dutta just received an apology from the film body to which she complained 10 years ago – an apology that also absolved the film body from acting on her allegations now. It’s worth noting that most industry voices who have spoken in favour of Dutta have been women, with a few exceptions such as Farhan Akhtar.
Nana Patekar denies Tanushree Dutta’s charges and claims to have sent her a legal notice demanding she apologise – Dutta says she has received no such letter.
Meantime, Patekar continues to film Housefull 4, co-starring Akshay Kumar, who has maintained a resolute silence on the controversy despite his wife Twinkle Khanna’s public support of Dutta.